TOPEKA — Attorneys representing the city of Olathe argued the Kansas Supreme Court’s derailment of an annexation pact between Spring Hill and Olathe could jeopardize similar alliances among municipalities guiding development throughout Kansas.
On the contrary, said lawyers for the city of Spring Hill, the type of open-ended annexation truce adopted in 2006 by the neighboring cities in Johnson County shouldn’t be construed to unfairly bind elected officials of those cities. The Spring Hill argument was that voters shouldn’t be perpetually disenfranchised by policy decisions of city council members who served more than 15 years ago.
Justices of the state Supreme Court sided with Spring Hill, which had moved in 2021 to abandon the annexation agreement. The justices said fundamentals of democracy and the laws of Kansas forbid an elected governing body from using its legislative power to constrain policy options of subsequent city councils.