The Lakeside Heights Sewer District #3 and the University Park Water District #4 projects continue to face challenges. Between a 43% increase in costs, and enduring six years of little progress with a lack of accurate and complete information, the projects are likely to be abandoned. Another Public Hearing regarding the special tax districts was well attended Monday at the Riley County Commissioners Meeting. Riley County Deputy Counselor Craig Cox delivered grim news to the property owners.
      1121 Cox props too small

Some residents asked about a variance, but the county cannot approve variances beyond State limitations, which is 0.8 acres minimum for a water well or wastewater disposal system. Most properties are much smaller than half an acre, while a few are about half an acre. Some residents and County officials believe the project has run its course, and no longer serves the needs of the community. Both sides suggested a more global solution, and believe the USDA may be able to assist with a project which includes the whole community. University Park property owner James Slaymaker says a solution must be explored and implemented because properties are already being abandoned, and that trend will continue.
      1121 James Slaymaker UnivPark owner

Property owners say they just want complete and accurate information regarding their water and sewer needs. Summit Ridge homeowner David Adkins and his family were forced to buy an additional home after years of bringing water into the house they bought six years ago. Before purchasing the property, he says the county told them it would be hooked to the new system in six months. He wants transparency in any future proposals.
      1121 Adkins mismanagement

Adkins hopes future recommendations will stay on track. He notes homes are being abandoned and the increased costs which are inevitable as projects fail to progress. If the water districts are dissolved, six property owners will have to share an assessed tax of $29,646 due in the current tax year for engineering fees. The commissioners unanimously voted to “place the project on hold for a later discussion, at a later date.”