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Aldermen work through power outage at meeting

Conditional use permit approved for restaurant/lounge


by J.W. Rudzik
Landmark reporter

The Platte City Board of Aldermen was in the dark during Tuesday night's city council meeting after a storm knocked out power to much of the city.

But the aldermen continued the meeting with emergency lighting and approved a conditional use permit at 200 Marshall, agreed to look into amending the business license ordinance and approved new guidelines for preparing the 2003 budget.

The conditional use permit was approved for Lona Webb, who plans to convert an existing house into a restaurant and lounge similar to "Strouds." The house is currently being used as a law office. The board addressed two concerns of residents bordering the proposed restaurant about signage and parking.

"I am concerned about the parking lot," Alderman Gary Brown said. "It will be a new hard surface and there will be runoff from it."

City Administrator Keith Moody referred to a staff report showing approval by the Planning and Zoning Commission. The report supported parking and storm water compliance with current city standards and that signage will be similar to current signage on the property.

Webb said the restaurant would operate from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m., similar to current surrounding businesses.

While approving the special use ordinance, the board questioned parking by customer on Marshall or in adjoining business lots. Webb said she did not have any control over where people parked, but could build a parking lot that could accommodate approximately 18 cars. Further parking could be built, but Webb said she was concerned with the elevation and stairs that customers would have to climb.

The staff report recommended Webb should submit a sit and engineering plan for adequate parking.

A Farmer's Market could start June 29 and operate until Oct. 26 on Saturdays, if the aldermen approve an ordinance change on business licenses. The Farmer's Market would be held in the parking lot of Paxton School, operating at 6:30 a.m. and would be similar to Farmer's Markets in Smithville and Leavenworth.

Mary Ann Brooks, co-chair of the Platte City Area Development Association, asked the board to consider an "umbrella" business license the association could use for vendors.

"At present we cannot have an umbrella business license," Brooks said. "People who want to participate do not feel they can afford a business license."

Brooks said that most of the vendors would be from out of town and felt they could not buy a license to sell for one day.

Moody told the board that the current ordinance covered various business needs and that license feeds could be pro-rated through the year.

Brooks said the association would not collect sales taxes, but would leave that accounting responsibility to the vendors. Brooks said the market would allow area growers to sell produce, flowers, and home crafted products.

"I have had several messages left on my answering machine concerning the opening of the market," Brooks said. "There is a lot of interest in it out there."

The aldermen also approved a new mission and vision statement to help guide the 2003 FY budget preparation. The statement is a step-by-step schedule for department heads to submit budget needs and refine department objectives.

The first meeting for Wednesday, June 12 is planned as a preliminary budget meeting with department heads to review budget preparation procedures. A special meeting is slated for Sept. 3 for adoption of the 2003 FY budget.

In other business, the aldermen considered:

•Interviews for a new police chief will start Friday, June 14. Approximately five candidates will be interviewed. Police Chief Bill Massock will accept a position with the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms in Washington D.C. Massock's new position will be in Special Operations.

•A replacement for city police officer. No date on when the search will begin.

•Park and Recreation Director Dannie Stamper told the board that the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) would use their funds to correct erosion at the northeast corner of the ball field, south of 92 Highway. The project will include riprap and grouting. Stamper said it will not relieve the problem of water on the field.