Sedgwick County commissioners Karl Peterjohn and Richard Ranzau spoke out this morning about what they said was their right to talk about whatever they want at the end of their meetings.
Commissioners have time at the end of every Wednesday meeting, called “other” on the agenda, to tell residents about upcoming events, issues of importance or other matters.
Chairman Dave Unruh recently told The Eagle he thought it was time for commissioners to “reel” themselves in a bit and stay focused on county business.
Peterjohn and Ranzau stressed today that they had a First Amendment right to speak. Peterjohn noted that President Obama talks on his Saturday radio program, and Gov. Sam Brownback has his “State of the State” address.
Members of the public are limited to five minutes when they address commissioners, but commissioners are under no such time limit at the end of the meetings.
Unruh did not respond to Peterjohn and Ranzau from the bench. He used his time at the end of the meeting to talk about the upcoming Sedgwick County Fair. Commissioner Tim Norton did not take his turn to speak. Commissioner Jim Skelton was not in attendance.