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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • City agrees to concealed carry request

  • The signs prohibiting concealed firearms at three Leavenworth Water Department buildings remained in place Wednesday. But it looks like they soon will be taken down.
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  • The signs prohibiting concealed firearms at three Leavenworth Water Department buildings remained in place Wednesday. But it looks like they soon will be taken down.
    The Leavenworth City Commission voted this week to send a letter to the Kansas attorney general to remove the buildings from a list of city-owned properties that are exempt from new concealed carry requirements.
    "They want to take those signs down," City Manager Scott Miller told commissioners Tuesday.
    The Leavenworth Water Department, which has its own governing board, is not part of the city government. But by law, the title for the Water Department's buildings are in the city's name.
    A state law that went into effect July 1 requires the city government to allow people to carry concealed firearms into municipal buildings unless the buildings have what are considered adequate security measures. The law applies to people who have permit to carry concealed firearms.
    The city government was able to receive an exemption from the requirements through the end of the year by sending a letter to the Kansas Attorney General's Office.
    The Water Department's downtown office and two plants were included on a list of city-owned properties that was part of the letter.
    John Kaufman, the Water Department's general manager, has said the department did not prohibit people from carrying concealed firearms into its buildings in the past. But the Water Department received a directive to post signs prohibiting concealed firearms as part of the city's exemption. And the Water Department has posted the signs.
    The Waterworks Board voted July 8 to ask that the department's buildings be removed from the city's exemption list. Miller and Leavenworth Police Chief Pat Kitchens attended that meeting.
    Mike Crow, attorney for the Water Department, later sent a letter to city commissioners making a formal request.
    In his letter, Crow wrote that Kansas law created the Leavenworth Water Department as a separate municipal entity. He also wrote that state law gives the department exclusive control of its plants. And under the law, the Waterworks Board "may establish all reasonable rules and regulations to protect the rights and property vested in the city and under the control of the board."
    Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to move forward with removing the Water Department buildings from the list.
    City Clerk Karen Logan said Wednesday that a second letter is being sent to the Kansas attorney general referencing the removal of the three Water Department buildings from the exemption list.
    Logan said the city received a response from the Attorney General's Office after the initial letter was sent. And she expects to receive a response to the new letter.
    Kaufman said Water Department officials plan to wait for official confirmation before removing the signs that prohibit concealed firearms.
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