KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
April 14, 2021
By Natalie Cook Clark
The Katy City Council has passed the strictest ordinance allowed for municipalities to implement. The ordinance prohibits registered sex offenders from residing within 2500 feet of places where children gather, and from entering city parks.
New City Ordinance further protects local children from registered sex offenders.
New Legislation Passes During Sexual Assault Awareness Month
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and the Katy City Council is focusing on protecting children against registered sex offenders.
This week, the Katy City Council passed an ordinance prohibiting registered sex offenders from residing within 2500 feet of places where children gather, and from entering city parks.
“The safety and welfare of our children is always a priority for the City of Katy and we are pleased that the passing of this ordinance will help to add an extra avenue of protection for our children,” Katy Mayor Bill Hastings.
“I am pleased to bring forward this ordinance, to protect our families and citizens,” says Chris Harris, City of Katy Mayor Pro Tem. “It will create a buffer zone around places children gather including a potential new Katy ISD school in Cane Island, and new city parks.”
Harris authored the ordinance after being approached by several residents. He worked with Mayor Bill Hastings, the Katy Police Chief J. Noe Diaz, and the City Attorney Arthur Pertile, III to create the legislation. Harris also extended gratitude to Councilmember Dusty Thiele for his help.
“(The ordinance) will also keep registered offenders away from current school campuses, city and HOA parks, pools, registered childcare centers, and public-school bus stops, and from entering city park facilities,” explains Harris.
This new ordinance amends Article 8.02 "Minors Division 1. Sex Offenders" of the City of Katy Code of Ordinances.
“This is public safety legislation that will provide enforcement and an additional tool for our law enforcement agencies,” says Harris. “The intention is to hang an unwelcome sign to sex offenders near children in our community.”
The public is encouraged to report any violations or suspicious persons to the Katy Police Department at 281-391-4848.
Katy Christian Ministries Offers Services, Resources
According to Katy Christian Ministries (KCM), on average, every 73 seconds an American is sexually assaulted.
The KCM Crisis Center works to combat sexual assault in the community. The non-profit organization’sservices reach into three counties - Harris, Fort Bend and Waller, and are offered to everyone regardless of religious background or affiliation.
KCM maintains a 24-hour hotline, 281-693-7273. For non-emergency situations, KCM can be reached at 281-391-5262.