A road improvement project that was a source of debate for the Leavenworth County Commission two years ago will come back to commissioners for them to reconsider.

A road improvement project that was a source of debate for the Leavenworth County Commission two years ago will come back to commissioners for them to reconsider.

Commissioners ended up approving the 179th Street project in 2016, but construction to pave the road has not started.

During a meeting Tuesday, Commission Chairman Louis Klemp called into question the earlier approval of the project.

County Administrator Mark Loughry said the project will be brought back to the commission for future discussion.

The project will pave a section of 179th Street between Leavenworth and Donahoo roads.

Klemp was not serving on the County Commission when commissioners debated the project in 2016. Commissioners debated whether they could proceed with the project as part of the county's Participatory Road Program.

Rules for the program required 100 percent cooperation among affected property owners. But two people who owned property along the project area declined to participate.

Commissioners eventually decided to move forward with the project but not as part of the Participatory Road Program.

Klemp brought up the project Tuesday while criticizing fellow Commissioner Bob Holland regarding employment contracts.

A lawsuit challenging the contracts of former county employees is still pending. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the County Commission.

Klemp said he had calculated that the county has spent $92,451 in legal fees. He said Holland previously stated that the county had spent $164,000.

Klemp argued that the county would not have legal fees if Holland and former Commissioner Dennis Bixby had not approved the contracts that are being challenged in the lawsuit.

The contracts were approved before Klemp joined the commission.

While a majority of the current makeup of the commission has supported the lawsuit, Holland has been opposed to the legal action.

Holland argued Tuesday that there has been illegal activity at the Leavenworth County Courthouse. He said the illegal activity is still going on, and there is an investigation.

Klemp then brought up the 179th Street project.

Holland suggested the commission could do away with the project.

Klemp said this would have been a good idea, but he thought the project was too far along.

County Counselor David Van Parys said the project has not been completed. He said utilities are being relocated for the project.

Klemp said county staff could address the topic during the next commission meeting. He said the commission may terminate the project.

After the meeting, Holland declined to comment about the illegal activity he had mentioned during the meeting.

The third county commissioner, Doug Smith, was absent Tuesday.

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