Homeowner Notification Requirement Removed for Administrative Search Warrants in Sedalia
Homeowners and occupants in Sedalia will no longer receive a notice from Code Enforcement prior to an administrative search warrant being applied for, after City Council approved an ordinance to amend City Code Monday night.
Chief Building Official Devin Lake addressed the Council during the Community Development portion of the meeting, noting that notifying the homeowner delays the application and sometimes renders obtaining a warrant impractical or impossible.
In addition, the current code does not include provisions to electronically submit applications for search warrants.
Lake noted that the City's legal counsel (Lauber Municipal Law, LLC, Lee's Summit) reviewed the provisions and determined that the code needs to be amended to remove the notification requirement.
This will “make the enforcement tool more efficient and effective, while still complying with state statutes and protecting due process rights,” according to Monday night's agenda packet.
“So this will improve us being able to tow vehicles off private property, and move forward with the administrative search warrant in a more timely manner,” Lake told the Council just before the vote.
It should be noted that the homeowner is still notified, but only after the search warrant is executed, not before.
Council voted 7-0 in favor of the change. (First Ward Councilman Tom Oldham was absent from Monday night's meeting). There was no discussion by Council members or opposition voiced by anyone at the meeting.