Ad Spot

May 12, 2021

Kannapolis bans registered sex offenders from recreation facilities

By Hugh Fisher
hfisher@salisburypost.com
KANNAPOLIS ó The City Council voted unanimously Monday to adopt an ordinance banning registered sex offenders from all city parks and recreation facilities.
Under the new law, any sex offender found guilty of coming to such a facility will face a $500 fine and the possibility of further charges, including felony counts under additional child-protection laws, according to Kannapolis Police Chief Woody Chavis.
The vote puts Kannapolis in line with other area governments, including Mecklenburg County and Morganton, which have put such laws into place this year.
In fact, language from those communities’ bans on sex offenders was adapted to craft the new ordinance in Kannapolis.
“We started this process in March and April as they (similar bans) became more and more prevalent around the state,” Parks Director Gary Mills said.
The Parks and Recreation Commission adopted the ordinance last month.
Under the new law, the only time a registered sex offender can legally come on Kannapolis Parks and Recreation property is when the facility is being used as a polling place on election day ó which does not currently happen, Mills said ó or if a public meeting of a governing body is being held there.
“This law has passed the Supreme Court’s litmus test” for constitutionality, Mills said.
Kannapolis Mayor Bob Misenheimer praised the measure, then asked Mills how offenders would be kept out of the parks.
Mills said that no “profiling” will take place, but police officers are well aware of registered sex offenders in the area and will be patrolling the areas as usual.
Approximately 378 registered sex offenders currently live in Rowan and Cabarrus counties, according to figures Kannapolis city staff used in preparing the ordinance. It is not clear how many of those people currently live within the Kannapolis city limits.
Despite the protection of the new law, Mills stressed that families should continue to exercise common-sense safety precautions.
“We don’t want to give a false sense of security. … This is simply a more proactive approach for the protection of all park visitors,” Mills said.
In other business, the council:
– Heard a report from Assistant Planning Director Ben Warren on the land-use plan for the N.C. 3 corridor, where Kannapolis and Mooresville hope to see the road widened to support travel among local employers.
Warren told council members that Cabarrus County does not currently support widening a large portion of N.C. 3 between the cities, stressing the need to maintain the rural character of the area.
However, City Manager Mike Legg said traffic estimates show severe overcrowding of the road will occur whether or not residential development takes place.
The council voted unanimously to send the Cabarrus County Board of Commissioners a statement supporting widening of the road and agreed to contact commissioners in person to express their support for widening the road.
– Discussed possible changes to the Unified Development Ordinance which would allow established strip malls to have individual signs for tenants, but would phase out those signs over a two-year period. No action was taken.
– Met Kannapolis’ newest police officer, Justin Royce, who joined the department in July and was introduced by Chavis. Royce was ceremonially sworn in by City Clerk Bridgette Bell.

Comments

Comments closed.

Education

A.L. Brown celebrates seniors with signing day

Business

Rebounding, but not recovered: Rowan County tourism begins challenging path toward normalcy

High School

High school baseball: Padgett leads Mustangs; 100th win for West coach Graham

Coronavirus

RSS superintendent, Board of Health discuss strategies for increasing student vaccination rates

Nation/World

Gas stations report shortages as pipeline shutdown drags on

News

Lawyers: Black man didn’t drive into deputies who shot him

Nation/World

Liz Cheney says Trump and GOP backers threaten democracy

Coronavirus

Rowan Health Department clarifies county’s COVID-19 death total is 301

Landis

Landis approves new land development ordinance, zoning map

Landis

Landis approves body camera, stun gun purchase for public safety officers

Crime

One charged, another dead on sheriff’s most wanted list

Crime

No injuries after car shot eight times on Old Concord Road

Education

RSS talks first steps for new federal relief totaling $66 million

China Grove

Gary’s Barbecue staff, customers look back at 50 years

News

Salisbury Lions Club names Person of the Year, Lion of the Year at 78th annual banquet

Education

Student COVID-19 numbers show first decline since plan A

High School

High school golf: Fowler competes in state tournament

News

Amazon announces new distribution center for North Carolina

News

House passes bill to bar Cooper from mandating COVID shot

Coronavirus

Rowan County sees death 302 from COVID-19; Health Department to host final mass vaccine clinic

Ask Us

Ask Us: What happened to work on South Fulton Street home?

Crime

Blotter: Woman says she was shot in hand on Lincolnton Road

Crime

Rowan Sheriff’s Office charges Salisbury man with operating illegal gambling business

Crime

Blotter: Rockwell man arrested on felony drug, breaking and entering charges