County approves SUP after earlier rejection

John Richmeier
The Leavenworth Times

When they met this week, Leavenworth County commissioners, approved a special use permit that had failed when it was before the County Commission last month.

The special use permit for a boat storage facility for Dusselier Boat Storage, 15829 174th St., was first considered by commissioners Sept. 1.

At that time, a resolution to approve the special use permit failed by 2-3 with Commissioners Mike Stieben and Jeff Culbertson voting for it.

Commissioners then voted to send the matter back to the Leavenworth County Planning Commission for them to further review what are referred to as the golden factors. These are factors that are supposed to be considered when reviewing a request for a special use permit.

Last week, Stieben asked that the County Commission take up the special use permit request again. And the issue was placed on the agenda for Wednesday's meeting.

The commissioners approved the special use permit Wednesday by a 3-2 vote. Commissioners Mike Smith and Vicky Kaaz voted against the motion.

Dusselier Boat Storage will provide storage during the winter season for 60-70 boats that will be located at Lake Quivera in Johnson County during other times of the year.

The boat storage facility does not match the suggested uses for the area under the county's comprehensive plan and its future land use map. Because of this, staff of the Leavenworth County Planning and Zoning Department recommended denial of the permit.

Members of the Planning Commission also voted to recommend denial of the permit when they first considered the issue.

When the matter was returned to the Planning Commission for additional review, members of that board decided not to reopen a public hearing on the issue to reconsider the golden factors, said Amy Allison, deputy director of the Planning and Zoning Department.

Stieben said Wednesday that the County Commission had voted in September to ask the Planning Commission to review the golden factors that would support the application. But Stieben said he does not believe this is what happened.

"Therefore, it's back to us," he said.

Culbertson said he believes information previously presented made it appear as though the boat storage business would be open to the public. But he said the business will only be used to store boats from Lake Quivera.

Allison said her department had not received a protest petition or written comments in opposition to the special use permit.

Commissioner Doug Smith, voted against the special use permit last month, changed his vote Wednesday and the permit was approved.

Doug Smith said he feels the future land use plan is limiting special use permits, and he believes the permits should be considered on an individual basis.

Commissioners, who discussed the county's comprehensive plan Wednesday during a work session, have discussed possible changes to the plan.

Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR

In other business

The Leavenworth County Commission:

• Voted to deliver gravel to an abandoned cemetery upon request from the Easton Township Board.

The board had requested the county's help for a gravel driveway at an abandoned cemetery located in the township.

Commissioner Jeff Culbertson suggested the township will be charged by the county for the gravel, but the county will cover the cost of delivering it to the site.

The motion was approved 3-2. Commissioners Mike Smith and Doug Smith voted against the motion.

Mike Smith expressed concern the county will receive more requests of this nature in the future.

"I'm not sure we want to get into this business," he said.

Doug Smith expressed concern the project will take away resources for county roads.

"I'm not for taking anything from the roads," he said.

• Conducted a work session during which they discussed proposed changes for access management along County Road 1 and possible changes to the submittal process for plats.