Council Recap: Hospital Annual Report, No Camping

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The council discussed a variety of topics, ranging from appointments to boards and commissions to ordinances related to public safety and transportation. The highlight of the meeting was a presentation of the Excelsior Springs Hospital’s annual report delivered by CEO Kristen DeHart. Additionally, the council reviewed and approved several applications for tax abatement and special use permits.

Proclamation – Older Americans Month

No one was in attendance to receive the proclamation and it was announced that the document would be sent to Clay County Senior Services

Proclamation – Building Safety Month

Mike Thompson received a proclamation declaring May 2023 as Building Safety Month. The proclamation recognizes the crucial role of local and state building departments, fire prevention bureaus, and federal agencies in protecting lives and property during everyday life and disasters. The International Code Council, a non-profit organization, brings together experts in the built environment to create and implement high-quality building codes that protect people from hazards such as hurricanes, snowstorms, tornadoes, wildfires, floods, and earthquakes. The theme for Building Safety Month 2023 is “It Starts with You,” which encourages people to raise awareness about building safety on a personal, local, and global scale. Mayor Spohn concluded the proclamation by thanking Mike Thompson for his professionalism and integrity as the city codes inspector for Excelsior Springs.

Proclamation – Local Government Week

The proclamation was not read nor included in the agenda. Mayor Spohn said, “We’re going to dispense with the reading of that and we’ll have that in Susan’s office for everyone to drop by and take a gander at if they so choose.”

Proclamation – Historic Preservation Month

Betty Bissell received a proclamation in honor of National Historic Preservation Month on behalf of the Historic Preservation Committee. The proclamation acknowledged the benefits of historic preservation, including promoting sustainable development, revitalizing neighborhoods, fostering local pride, promoting tourism, and maintaining community character. It also recognized the contributions of individuals in preserving tangible aspects of the city’s heritage. Mayor Spohn noted in the proclamation that the city of Excelsior Springs conducted its first comprehensive survey of historic properties in 1991, which led to the recording of historic properties with the state of Missouri’s historic preservation office and the establishment of its first historic district in 2007.

Presentation – Excelsior Springs Hospital 2022 Annual Report

Excelsior Springs Hospital CEO Kristen DeHart presented the annual report. The report covered the hospital’s achievements during the past year, including celebrating the hospital team and their culture while recovering from the effects of COVID-19. DeHart shared stories and data which reflect the dramatic turnaround of the local institution over the past 6 years. Highlights included, the hospital’s growth, which had seen the number of employees increase from 180 to 315 in the last three years which is attributed to the workplace culture of the hospital. DeHart praised the resiliency of the hospital staff and shared a quote encouraging people to appreciate the strength gained during challenging times. “When you look back on the past year don’t think about the pain that you felt think about the strength you’ve gained and appreciate how far you’ve come. Give yourself credit for resiliency and step forward with Grace.” Despite the challenges faced, the hospital has not only survived but it has continued to thrive and grow.
Watch the video above for a replay of the report and watch for a future article in the Excelsior Citizen sharing more details.

Consideration of Public Safety Sales Tax Oversight Committee Board Appointment

Mayor Spohn’s appointment of Les O’Dell to the Public Safety Sales Tax Oversight Committee Board by resolution was approved. O’Dell’s appointment is for a term lasting until September 30, 2025.

Consideration of 436 E. Broadway Ave. Project Amendment to the Redevelopment Agreement

During the Excelsior Springs City Council meeting, the application for 353 Tax Abatement by Gilead Investments, LLC for improvements to the property at 436 E Broadway Ave was approved. The house, located in the Boarding House District, is a one-and-a-half story Folk Victorian house with a stone foundation and a magnificent view from the front porch looking west down Broadway Ave. The owner plans to use the property as a short-term rental, and planned improvements include an entire interior remodel, new plumbing, electrical, HVAC, improved sewer and water line, patio and parking pad, grading, landscaping, and retaining wall, windows and roof repair, paint and front porch repair. The sidewalk will be replaced, which entitles the owner to an extra 3 years of abatement at 50% of the value of the improvements. The project was approved by the Historic Preservation Commission on March 8, 2023, and considered by the Excelsior Springs Redevelopment Corporation on April 13, 2023, and was recommended for approval. Projected expenditures total $125,100 for interior and exterior work. This project qualifies for tax abatement at 100% for 10 years and then 50% abatement for 3 years, or the cost of improvements, whichever comes first.

Consideration of Special Use Permit for 1097 Italian Way

Laura Mize presented a report on a tattoo business that had been granted a Special Use Permit in 2021 for a two-year period for the operation of a tattoo studio and retail store. Mize said the Zoning Regulations recognize that some land uses require special consideration due to their unique nature, and in this case, a Special Use Permit was authorized for a tattoo facility in a “C-2” General Business District or “C-3” Service Business District. City staff found that since the permit was issued two years ago, there had been no conflicts or negative impacts on the surrounding neighborhood, and the business appeared to be in compliance with all other city codes and standards they recommended that the special use permit be granted in perpetuity.

Consideration of Special Use Permit for 220 W Excelsior Street

Laura Mize presented a request submitted by Kabuki Anyumba for a Special Use Permit (SUP) for a fourplex located at 220 W. Excelsior Street, which is currently rented out to three tenants. The owner of the complex is requesting to operate each unit as a short-term rental and wishes to change the rental use to allow renting out for defined periods of time to visitors and vacationers, commonly known as an ‘Airbnb’ or ‘VRBO.’ Staff analyzed the proposal and found it to be compatible with the surrounding properties and can be operated in an appropriate manner. City staff recommended the approval of the SUP for a two-year time period.

Consideration of Amending the City Code to Regulate Camping on Public Property

A request was submitted by Nate Williams, Director of Parks, Recreation, and Community Center along with ESPD, regarding the consideration of a No Camping Ordinance on City property. The ordinance makes it illegal to camp in public areas such as parks, trails, streets, alleys, and any public property, whether improved or not. However, the City Manager is authorized to issue permits for camping, use of camp facilities, or camp paraphernalia in any park or public property. The permit application will be reviewed by several city departments to identify any potential risks or issues the proposed camping activity may pose to the public. The City Manager may approve the permit with conditions ensuring adequate sanitary facilities, trash receptacles, and that the activity will not disturb or interfere with private property owners or the general public. No permit will be issued for more than three consecutive calendar days, or 15 days in a year. The City Manager has the authority to revoke a permit if they find a lack of compliance with any of the requirements. Definitions of key terms such as “camp,” “camp facilities,” and “camp paraphernalia” are also provided in the ordinance.

Consideration of Amending the Schedule of Fees, Related to Ambulance Fees

The council passed an ordinance repealing certain fees from the Excelsior Springs Municipal Code Schedule of Fees. Specifically, the fees for various fire and EMS services, such as waiting time, airway management, and basic disposal supplies, have been repealed. Additionally, the fees associated with the Ambulance Membership program have been revised. This ordinance is now in full force and effect.

Consideration of Public Transportation 5311 Grant Application for Operating/Capital for 2023

Due to the recent change of mayor, it was necessary for the council to pass an ordinance authorizing the new mayor to apply for federal financial assistance on behalf of the city and execute any contracts resulting from such applications for any grants from the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission. These grants will provide capital, operating, and marketing assistance to the Commission-approved transit projects using federal funds.


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