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Thread: Lake Stevens

  1. #1
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    Lake Stevens

    Hello all! I'm new to the forums, but have spend the last few weeks reading up and learning all about Open Carry and I'm totally on board. (I just need to buy a pistol now.)

    I decided to look into my local city laws on this issue to see what they've done in regards to firearms. I found the following law in relation to our local parks:

    10.03.100 Firearms and Explosives.
    No person shall shoot, fire, or explode any fireworks, firecrackers, torpedoes, or explosives of any kind or throw any projectiles, or carry any firearm, or shoot or fire any firearm, air gun, bow and arrow, BB gun, or use any slingshot on any park properties except a law enforcement officer in the line of duty. The Director may issue a permit for the purpose of conducting a public fireworks display under RCW 70.77.260. The permit must meet the requirements of Section 9.64.030, Public Display of Fireworks. (Ord. 821, Sec. 2, 2009)

    You can view the whole laws here: http://www.lakestevenswa.gov/Documen.../Home/View/635

    As I read it, they are in violation of state law. They seem to even be violated concealed carry laws in addition to the open carry laws. Am I wrong in my interpretation? If so, who should I contact to get this changed?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Regular Member leitung's Avatar
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    Washington state has complete preemption of firearms laws, meaning local governments can't make laws stricter than the state's.

    If you follow WA state law, you will be fine. Even if you are charged with violating a local section, you can fight it in court and win.

    It seems our legal gurus here have not tackled this law yet, or maybe they have by now. That's an illegal law as I read it.

    It's something to contact your city council about, and press the issue. Oak Harbor is a recent case you could bring up to back your opinion.
    Last edited by leitung; 05-18-2013 at 04:54 PM.

  3. #3
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    Email sent.

  4. #4
    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfslicer View Post
    Hello all! I'm new to the forums, but have spend the last few weeks reading up and learning all about Open Carry and I'm totally on board. (I just need to buy a pistol now.)

    I decided to look into my local city laws on this issue to see what they've done in regards to firearms. I found the following law in relation to our local parks:

    10.03.100 Firearms and Explosives.
    No person shall shoot, fire, or explode any fireworks, firecrackers, torpedoes, or explosives of any kind or throw any projectiles, or carry any firearm, or shoot or fire any firearm, air gun, bow and arrow, BB gun, or use any slingshot on any park properties except a law enforcement officer in the line of duty. The Director may issue a permit for the purpose of conducting a public fireworks display under RCW 70.77.260. The permit must meet the requirements of Section 9.64.030, Public Display of Fireworks. (Ord. 821, Sec. 2, 2009)

    You can view the whole laws here: http://www.lakestevenswa.gov/Documen.../Home/View/635

    As I read it, they are in violation of state law. They seem to even be violated concealed carry laws in addition to the open carry laws. Am I wrong in my interpretation? If so, who should I contact to get this changed?

    Thanks!
    I would start by writing a letter to the mayor. Depending on the response you receive, I would follow up by attending a city council meeting and bring the problem in the open comment period. Before you do anything, look in the town code (usually online) and make sure this is the only place they have the law wrong. I just got Tonasket to change their town code, 9.22, 9.24(010) and 9.50. If it is out of compliance in one place, there is a good chance it is out of compliance in other places.

    Compare the city code to RCW 9.41.300. RCW 9.41.300 has everything that local governments can regulate. Pay particular attention to the second clause in (2)(a) as concerns discharge of a weapon in self defense. I personally would specifically point out Chan V city of Seattle( http://www.courts.wa.gov/opinions/pd...-4.pub.doc.pdf )when speaking to the parks ban.

    Make the letter calm and informative. Oh yes, do not expect immediate response... They will run whatever you say past their lawyers. You may have to attend several city council meetings to make sure it gets done.

    Oh yes, one other thing. You do NOT have to be a gun owner to bird dog this. It might be helpful if a couple other Lake Stevens OCers would help you.
    Last edited by hermannr; 05-19-2013 at 01:27 AM.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for your input, I wrote the e-mail to the entire City Council, in a laid back and informative way. If they respond negatively then I figure I can bring up all of the cases that have come up in the last few years. Should I also send one to the mayor? As they are all enjoying their weekends, it will hit all of them early Monday morning anyway.

    Thanks for your input! I will make sure to keep following up with this until an appropriate resolution is attained.

  6. #6
    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfslicer View Post
    Thanks for your input, I wrote the e-mail to the entire City Council, in a laid back and informative way. If they respond negatively then I figure I can bring up all of the cases that have come up in the last few years. Should I also send one to the mayor? As they are all enjoying their weekends, it will hit all of them early Monday morning anyway.

    Thanks for your input! I will make sure to keep following up with this until an appropriate resolution is attained.
    Actually, I would send the Mayor a snail mail letter. Well formatted and informative. Once you have his attention then you can use email.

    Tell him of your concerns, where the city code is not in sync with state law, why you believe it to be not in sync. As stated earlier, you might also back your parks ban specific claim up with Chan V City of Seattle and mention how expensive it was for Seattle to try do something that state law does not allow local governments to do. As a Lake Stevens tax payer it is in your interest that the city not waste money on a guaranteed loosing law suit.

    It is possible to be too polite, you may need a bit of a push in the message. The final prod might be to mention RCW 9.41.810. "Any violation of any provision of 9.41 that does not have a specific penalty is a chargeable misdemeanor." (this includes 9.41.300)
    Last edited by hermannr; 05-19-2013 at 02:08 AM.

  7. #7
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    So I emailed Mayor Little before going to bed and he replied back this morning:

    I believe we just change this ordinance. I will have someone on staff to confirm. Thanks.

    Sent from my iPhone
    Vern Little, Mayor


    Pretty pleased the Mayor is already informed and replied back promptly on a weekend!

  8. #8
    Activist Member golddigger14s's Avatar
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    Make sure you write back thanking him for his fast response. It's one thing to get an issue resolved, but equally important to have professional follow-up after the fact. Good job, and welcome to OCDO.
    "The beauty of the Second Amenment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it." Thomas Jefferson
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  9. #9
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    Thanks! I wrote him back immediately (partly because of his shockingly quick reply)!

  10. #10
    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfslicer View Post
    Thanks! I wrote him back immediately (partly because of his shockingly quick reply)!
    That is the reason I stated "depending on his reply". Like with Oak Harbor (and Tonasket) the mayor was personally very supportive of following state law. Some on the city council were the ones that we having fart failure.

  11. #11
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    Yeah, I saw the youtube video of the one council member who acted childish when his illegal proposal to have the vet turn in his gun or leave failed to pass. Pretty silly.

    Also several council members have also replied back confirming that it was indeed repealed. I sent them my thanks as well.
    Last edited by jfslicer; 05-20-2013 at 12:49 AM.

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