Mayor disputes county commissioner’s comments

John Richmeier
The Leavenworth Times

Members of the Leavenworth City Commission are taking exception with recent comments from a county commissioner.

During a Leavenworth City Commission meeting Tuesday, Mayor Nancy Bauder discussed remarks County Commissioner Jeff Culbertson made last week.

Culbertson’s remarks were made to the Lansing City Council as he discussed a proposal for a bridge project to connect Eisenhower Road in Leavenworth County with Missouri 152 Highway in Platte County, Missouri.

Culbertson said he believed there was hesitancy to support the project among some Leavenworth city commissioners because they are worried about losing the Centennial Bridge and they are worried the new bridge could lead to Lansing or even Basehor outgrowing Leavenworth.

Culbertson told Lansing City Council members the new bridge would not replace Centennial Bridge, which is located in north Leavenworth.

Culbertson, whose County Commission district includes a portion of Leavenworth, said he also is not trying to pit one city against another. Culbertson said he wants to help all of the northeast region of Leavenworth County.

“What he said at the meeting was very negative toward Leavenworth,” Bauder said Tuesday.

Bauder said the City Commission is looking for ways to improve transportation in the county as a whole and supports a countywide transportation study.

She said it is untrue to say the city of Leavenworth is concerned about the growth of another city.

Bauder said this “sews the seeds of division and animosity.”

“I don’t know where he got that idea, but we do not feel that way,” she said.

City Commissioner Mark Preisinger said Culbertson’s statement was patently false.

Mayor Pro-Tem Camalla Leonhard said she had reached out to County Commission Chairman Mike Smith and discussed the issue with him. Leonhard said she tried to reach Culbertson but had not heard back from him.

Bauder said City Manager Paul Kramer wrote a letter to Smith and Culbertson regarding the issue.

In other business

The Leavenworth City Commission:

• Approved a bid from Mid-Continent Restoration, Fort Scott, in the amount of $249,521 for repairs at Leavenworth City Hall.

• Approved a small cell facility development and master right-of-way license agreement with New Cingular Wireless PCS.