Wichita City Council

Wichita's City Council voted 7-0 yesterday to approve a new hotel tax to finance efforts to promote tourism and attract large events.

The 2.75 percent tax will apply for guests at hotels with more than 50 rooms.

The levy is expected to generate about 2 1/2- to- 3 million dollars a year.

The Council also approved the establishment of a tourism business improvement district yesterday.

Wichita officials say current promotional funding was growing slowly, and the city is facing strong competition from other cities to attract conventions and tourists.

Hugo Phan / KMUW

Wichita City Council Member Lavonta Williams has been appointed to chair the 2014 Community and Economic Development Steering Committee of the National League of Cities. 

The National League of Cities provides resources and advocates for 19,000 cities, towns and villages in the U.S. 

Carla Eckels / KMUW

The changing role of libraries is evident across the country. With e-books and other emerging technologies, libraries continue to adapt to meet the needs of their patrons.

A master plan to build a new central library in downtown Wichita has been in the works for the last seven years. Funding for the $29 million facility is now up in the air with the Wichita City Council directing the library to seek out more private funds. 

City Council Takes No Action On Clinic Rezoning

Aug 13, 2013

The Wichita City Council has taken no action on efforts by abortion foes to use zoning laws to drive out a clinic that performs abortions.

Wichita City Council, District 1

Incumbent city council member Lavonta Willams kept her seat, beating out Dave Thomas with 71 percent of the vote. Thomas had 28 percent of the vote.

Wichita City Council, District 3

James Clendenin grabbed the District 3 Wichita city council seat in a close race with Clinton Coen. Clendenin had 52 percent of the vote, Coen had 46 percent.

Wichita City Council, District 6

Ho John Lee / Flickr

Spring elections are drawing near and starting Wednesday the Sedgwick County Elections office will mail out advance voting applications.

Election Commissioner Tabitha Lehman says the ballots will go out through March 29, the Friday before the election.

"We just ask when you fill out that application to be sure that you read the instructions and complete it so we don't have a delay in getting your ballot out to you," she says.

The Wichita City Council approved funding Tuesday for two of the most heavily used municipal pools in Wichita. The pools must meet new ADA requirements.

College Hill pool on the east side of Wichita and Harvest on the west side will split $80,000 from the Capital Improvement Program to meet the new federal ADA standards. That's half of the funding, with the other 50 percent coming from the Department of Public Works and Utilities.

After a lengthy discussion Tuesday, the Wichita City council decided which programs would be funded by a federal block grant.

The Community Services Block Grant is expected to be cut in half, providing about $532,000 to support various service programs in Wichita. That means some programs that were previously funded will get less - or none.

Mary Kay Vaughn, Director of Housing and Community Services, told the council that the review committee had to prioritize what programs would get funded.

City grant application excludes programs that were previously funded; Kansas realtors to rally at Statehouse; Coffeyville refinery will pay millions in penalties.

Loss Of Federal Funds Will Reduce Programs For Wichitans

After a lengthy discussion Tuesday, Wichita City Council members decided what programs would receive funds from a federal grant.

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Kansas Realtor Group To Rally At Statehouse

The Wichita City Council approved a new contract Tuesday with Greengroup to operate a construction and demolition landfill in northwest Wichita.

Greengroup, formerly Herzog Environmental, has operated the landfill since 2001. The landfill will continue with current staff.

Don Henry, assistant director of Public Works and Utilities, told the council the contract includes ongoing operations of the landfill and provides for the opening of a new construction and demolition cell.

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