Saturday, June 16, 2007

Council agenda: District 1, repealing gun laws, paying DETAMC, Inc.

Who will switch their vote for a new District 1 Council member? Will an $80,000 check really be the end of the DETAMC, Inc. discrimination case? Will anyone bother commenting on the repeal of local conceal carry laws that the state overruled this year?

It's all up for grabs at 9 a.m. Tuesday when the City Council meets.

Voting to break the 3-3 deadlock between Treatha Brown-Foster and Lavonta Williams will be one of the last items council members consider. Their rules require them to vote until someone is chosen. But, to do that, someone will have to switch their vote and explain why they changed their mind after voting 20 times in a row for the same candidate last Tuesday. Or, members could cast votes for one of the other three candidates -- Eugene Anderson, Michael Kinard or George Rogers. But that seems unlikely. (For more on the ballots, see The Eagle's story.)

The DETAMC settlement stems from a lawsuit that was settled in March. Here's a snippet from a story by The Eagle's Christina Woods:

"The city of Wichita broke its contract with a welfare-to-work program but didn't discriminate against the owners because of race, a federal jury found Wednesday.
A jury in Kansas City, Kan., ordered the city to pay more than $50,000 to George and Pamela Johnson, the owners of Diversified Educational Training and Manufacturing Co., or DETAMC.

The Johnsons, who are African-American, had sought $3.9 million in damages.Their lawsuit claimed that a city-led audit of their job-training company was racially motivated. They contended the city held DETAMC to higher scrutiny based on their race. The city's audit alleged the company billed the city for books never provided to students and failed to file required monthly progress reports, among other findings."

Conceal carry repeal
In December last year, the council unanimously passed a bill that made it illegal for people with conceal carry licenses to carry firearms on public property, such as parks. But, when Sen. Phil Journey, a Republican from Haysville and a leading advocate for conceal carry, spotted it, he penned a bill to stop cities like Wichita from further restricting people's right to carry. It passed in Topeka. Several council members now support the repeal -- despite having voted in favor of more restrictions.

And, as always, the entire city council agenda can be seen online in a PDF.


Zelda said...

So what's your point on the concealed carry? The bill prohibits local cities from overiding the state law. Now it seems, in retrospect, and with some study and reflection, that lawmakers agree with that. They now feel their initial response to the CCH permit was in fact, a knee-jerk reaction. They don't want their cities to be places where only the bad guys have guns. They don't want to post signs that say "Defenseless Victim Zone." In other words, time has allowed common sense do settle this. So what is your point? Are you so anti-gun that it riles you that even the former foes of CCH are now OK with it?

Brent Wistrom said...


The point on this amendment to city code is to reverse an ordinance that council members approved late last year that restricted licensed carriers from carrying on many public properties. Reporting the council's previous vote is just part of informing the public about the issue and why the city is changing their code again.

Anonymous said...

Concealed carry is now in effect. Wjat happened to the bloodbath we were warned about? Maybe Kelly Johnston is full of BS.