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City of Hutchinson Approves Updates to Standard Traffic Ordinances and Uniform Public Offense Code, Highlights from Meeting


By Lucky Kidd


HUTCHINSON, Kan. — The Hutchinson City Council Tuesday, Aug. 1 approved the annual updates to the Standard Traffic Ordinance for Kansas Cities and Uniform Public Offense Code published by the League of Kansas Municipalities. The two documents are updated annually to reflect changes in state law and appellate court decisions impacting what is included in the documents.

City Attorney Paul Brown said the major change to the traffic ordinance was one lobbied for by the city of Topeka, which eliminates a mandatory five day jail sentence for first and second convictions of driving on a suspended license. This applies to suspensions due solely to unpaid fines or failure to appear. District courts have long had the option of suspending jail time on first offenses for driving while suspended.

Public Offense Code changes include revisions to various definitions including inclusion of electronic stalking as an offense and addition of new offenses of battery against a health care provider and others to match up with current state laws.

The Council approved a conditional use permit to allow expansion of a storage yard on the east edge of the city. Hutchinson Metal Recycling requested the permit in order to add a lot adjoining their existing operation at 7 N Superior where it had been granted a conditional use permit in April, 2021.

Connected with this an application will be filed to vacate an alley separating the two parcels. The Planning Commission had recommended approval of the change last month.

The Council approved the appointment of Carlton DeVaul to the Hutchinson Recreation Commission Board of Directors. DeVaul is taking a position that had been held by Leslie Shea whose term expires at the end of August.

The Council also approved a resolution adding interim City Manager Mary Grace Clements to the list of persons authorized to conduct banking business on behalf of the city. There are three such people authorized, the others being Finance Director Angela Richard and Accounting Manager Karen Weltmer.