The behind-the-scenes negotiations that led three Mission Valley area homeowners to back out of a protest petition against the Tutera Group’s Mission Chateau proposal will have a substantial impact on the vote that’s likely to decide the fate of the project on Monday.
Prairie Village’s legal team on Thursday sent notice to the organizers of the protest petition informing them that, based on the city’s analysis, the petition had valid signatures representing just 18.31 percent of the area within 200 feet of the property — short of the 20 percent threshold required to necessitate a supermajority for passage at the city council level.
As such, the Tutera group will need only a straight majority of seven affirmative votes for the plan to pass. Because a successful protest petition was in place when the city council considered the first Mission Chateau plan in September, Tutera needed 10 affirmative votes for the plan to pass. Consequently, the proposal failed despite Mayor Ron Shaffer breaking a 6-6 council tie in Tutera’s favor.
Two of the homeowners who backed out of the petition – the Diego and Baratta families – have properties that represented more than 2 percent of the area eligible to protest the proposal, meaning that had either kept their names on the petition, it would likely have been valid and triggered the supermajority requirement for the council vote. The third homeowners to back out, the Ludwig family, represented .03 percent of the protest area.
With the supermajority requirement absent, Tutera’s hopes for passing the 350,000 square foot senior living community proposal would appear to be very bright. David Morrison, who voted against the original proposal, has been ousted from the council and replaced by Ward 5 resident Courtney McFadden, who was nominated to fill Morrison’s vacancy by Shaffer. Should the six councilors who voted in favor of the first proposal vote for the second, and should McFadden vote in favor of the proposal, Tutera would have enough votes for passage. Should there only be six affirmative votes from the council, though, the tie breaking vote would go to Shaffer. For the Mission Valley Neighbors Association to get its desired outcome, McFadden would have to vote against the proposal, and one councilor who voted in favor of the initial proposal would have to change his or her mind.
The letter from Prairie Village’s lawyers to the attorneys representing the Mission Valley Neighbors Association explaining the process of validating the protest petition is embedded below.