Working toward a resolution
Butler Community College issued a formal statement early Friday morning in response to Thursday's announcement from Andover Mayor Ben Lawrence. Lawrence shared that he had formerly vetoed Ordinance 1679, concerning the Special Use Permit for the expansion of Butler Community College in Andover.
The statement reads, "Butler Community College leadership and Gravity Works Architects were surprised to learn of the veto on Thursday by Andover Mayor Ben Lawrence. The veto was issued following approval by the Andover Planning Commission on Tuesday. We are gathering information to work toward a resolution.
This process of a special use permit is related to a relocation of programs and services. It is not an expansion. The college needs to vacate the Andover High School premises because of the school district's own construction projects which will include the demolition of Butler's current space.
Given Andover High School's timing, we have been working for months with the City of Andover to secure all needed permits and approvals.
In 2005 when Butler initiated the processes to use the 5000 Building for educational purposes and filed its first special use permit, Mayor Ben Lawrence issued a veto then. A number of conditions were put into place. An agreement was reached as Butler was allowed to move forward with renovations and occupancy of the 5000 Building. The college will provide additional information to the City Council at its meeting on Tuesday."
Further discussion is expected and the Council will have the opportunity to accept or override the veto at Tuesday's meeting.
Lawrence's action follows months of debate between Butler Community College leadership and supporters, and Kansas Representative Kristey Williams (R-Dist. 77) and those who want BCC to slash its property tax levy.