Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Council to Discuss Turnpike Interchange ; Turnpike: Sales Tax Revenue on Agenda

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Council to Discuss Turnpike Interchange ; Turnpike: Sales Tax Revenue on Agenda

Article excerpt

The Topeka City Council plans this coming week to discuss making a move that might help bring about the construction of a third Kansas Turnpike interchange, and talk about distributing future revenue from the countywide, half-cent sales tax.

Council members don't plan to act on those matters when they meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday in their chambers at 214 S.E. 8th.

The Shawnee County Commission will meet at 9 a.m. Monday in its chambers in Room B-11 of the county courthouse, 200 S.E. 7th.

A document in the agenda packet for Tuesday's council meeting says the Kansas Turnpike Authority asked the city of Topeka to pay $19,963.50 -- or half the total cost of $39,927, with the state paying the rest -- to conduct a preliminary study to look at the feasibility of building and operating an additional interchange at S.E. 29th Street or S.E. California Avenue.

The city's public works department has been working with the KTA and the Kansas Department of Transportation to try to arrange to have such an interchange built, the document said. The KTA will add the interchange to its long-term needs plan, it added.

The council also plans to discuss how to use revenue from the extension of a countywide, half-cent sales tax that expires Dec. 31, 2016. The city council and county commission last year tried unsuccessfully to reach an interlocal agreement on how much money would go toward each individual project being financed using revenue from the extended version of the tax.

Council members last year approved a resolution expressing support for extending the tax for the 15-year period beginning Jan. 1, 2017, while listing projects that revenue from the tax would finance, including infrastructure work, bikeways, economic development and improvements at the Topeka Zoo and Kansas Expocentre.

County commissioners then approved a resolution putting the question on the ballot while listing the projects but not the amounts they would receive. Shawnee County voters approved the ballot question Nov. 6, 2014.

County commissioners next voted Nov. 20, 2014, to approve an interlocal agreement outlining how much money would go for each listed purpose. …

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