Leavenworth city commissioners have taken another step toward implementing a fee to pay for the maintenance of the city's stormwater system.

Leavenworth city commissioners have taken another step toward implementing a fee to pay for the maintenance of the city's stormwater system.

When they met Tuesday, commissioners had their first consideration of a charter ordinance that will exempt the city government from provisions of the Kansas Water Pollution Act and enable the city to establish a stormwater management program and stormwater utility fee.

Commissioners reached a consensus to advance the charter advance for a final vote during a Feb. 13 meeting.

For months, commissioners have been discussing plans to establish a fee to pay for maintenance of the stormwater system, which carries rainwater away from buildings and roads. The water is channeled into creeks and watershed areas.

City officials say they have identified about $84 million in needed maintenance.

Commissioners plan to have the fee included on annual property tax statements.

While city staff members have presented fee proposals, commissioners have not yet set any rates.

"This charter ordinance does not set any rates," Assistant City Manager Taylour Tedder said.

If the charter ordinance is approved by commissioners next month, there will be a 60-day protest period, City Clerk Carla Williamson said.

Also Tuesday, commissioners approved the Leavenworth Police Department's purchase of a new truck and another piece of equipment.

The truck will be used for the Police Department's Special Weapons and Tactics Team. The truck is being purchased from LDV Custom Specialty Vehicles, Burlington, Wisconsin, for $126,063.

The Police Department also is purchasing a laser scanner from Faro Technologies, Lake Mary, Florida, for $44,548. The equipment will allow police officers to capture data about crime scenes and accident scenes using laser measurements, according to Police Chief Pat Kitchens.

Commissioners also approved a contract with TreanorHL, Topeka, for an amount not to exceed $66,300. The company will perform design work for the remaining phase of a stone replacement project at the Riverfront Community Center.

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