Those holding professional fighting matches on city limits now need a special license from the city.


Those holding professional fighting matches on city limits now need a special license from the city.
The McPherson City Commission voted at its regularly scheduled meeting on Monday to instate a new ordinance requiring individual licenses for all “professional sporting contests” conducted within city limits.
Sports regulated by the ordinance includes most fighting sports, including boxing, wrestling and mixed martial arts. It governs only such events when held professionally, meaning school and club activities, such as high school wrestling tournaments or karate classes, are exempt from the regulations.
The rules, which were adapted from similar licensing requirements in Hutchinson, ensure those engaging in professional prize fights are fully insured, are free of felonies and are adults.
After the meeting, City Administrator Nick Gregory told The Sentinel the commission was instating the ordinance after an incident in which the Kansas Boxing Commissioner contacted the city about a possible unlicensed prize fight being held in McPherson. The company accused of hosting the fight, McPherson-based Kansas Super Fights, has since said the event did not include a prize fight, and that confusion arose when the commissioner thought a professional fighter signing autographs at the event was competing. Kansas Super Fights denies any wrongdoing and opposes the ordinance as targeting and restricting their specific business.
Gregory said the commission decided to pass the measure to protect the city from any liability should a prize fight be conducted in the city without its knowledge. Had such a fight occurred on its property, the City of McPherson may have been liable for a $10,000 fine from the state.