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Thread: Kitsap County Commisioner's Meeting

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    Here is a report on the Kitsap County Commissioner’s briefing regarding the prohibition on firearms carry in County parks.

    I was well received, but unfortunately I was the only citizen who was able to attend.

    As soon as this issue was brought before the meeting, they went into “executive session”. I’m not sure what it was that the County Commissioners didn’t want the citizens to hear. What could be so devastatingly important and confidential that mere citizens should not be privy to? I guess we’ll never know.

    When the “executive session” was concluded, I was ushered back into the conference room, and I was informed that they had decided NOT to change Kitsap County Code to conform to Washington State law. They said they had issues with carrying firearms in County buildings. I pointed out that the KCC I was concerned with is titled “Firearms in parks”. What has that got to do with buildings? I invoked the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, Section 24 of Article 1 of the Washington State Constitution, and when the County Administrator (a lawyer) tried to tell me that the KCC prohibition to carrying firearms in parks had NOT been repealed, I read them parts of RCW 9.41.290. Good grief! What part of


    "Local laws and ordinances that are inconsistent with, more restrictive than, or exceed the requirements of state law shall not be enacted and are preempted and repealed..."

    don’t they understand? They simply do NOT want to conform/comply with Washington State law!

    Was there anything good that came out of the meeting? Sure. They put me down with a smile on their face, and they were very cordial. How sweet.

    I told them (with the Under Sheriff sitting right next to me) that I would continue to carry openly in the parks on a daily basis, because I knew that I was protected by Washington State law.

    The Commissioners said they would continue to look into the issue. Isn’t that nice?

    Why did I even bother? I’m demoralized, exasperated, and fed up, which I guess is exactly where they want me to be.

    If anyone else wants to write letters or phone, I’ve got all the contact information. Any help would be appreciated.


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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    Wow Bruce, it sounds like they put you through the wringer. I thought Lonnie was going with you? Had I known you were going alone I would have taken the afternoon off. Thanks for the hard work and don’t feel demoralized. Let me know when you’ll be out and I’ll join you for some OC.

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    What you got was the "we know you are right but we don't want to publicly admit it because then we would look like fools and idiots" attitude.

    If State Law has preempted that's it. If they want to try and enforce a law contrary to state law when it is specifically repealed then let them. It will then force them to contribute to the cash flow of an attorney and make a contribution to your retirement fund.

    When push comes to shove nobody is going to be arrested for carrying in a park or any other public area not specifically prohibited by law (schools, bars, etc.).
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

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    Thanks for making it to the meeting, Bruce. I wish I could have been there; it's too bad more people couldn't show up.

    I think it's time for me to write another letter expressing my dissapointment that even with at least one commissioner's legal experience, they failed to agree with us. I will stress to them that this is not a matter of what they feel like doing, under guise of carrying out their constituents wishes, but a legal matter that is already settled. Bringing KCC into compliance with state law will only serve to protect the county and the tax payers. Furthermore, I will tell them I was not at all happy to have been invited to the meeting only to find out I wouldn't have been able to hear anything except their decision, announced after the "executive session."

    I would like to see the report the county prosecutor wrote at the request of Nancy Grennan, which was supposed to inform the commissioner's decision. It would appall me if the prosecutor suggested that they change the ordinance and the commissioners ignored even that.

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    sean-1286 wrote:
    Thanks for making it to the meeting, Bruce. I wish I could have been there; it's too bad more people couldn't show up.

    I think it's time for me to write another letter expressing my dissapointment that even with at least one commissioner's legal experience, they failed to agree with us. I will stress to them that this is not a matter of what they feel like doing, under guise of carrying out their constituents wishes, but a legal matter that is already settled. Bringing KCC into compliance with state law will only serve to protect the county and the tax payers. Furthermore, I will tell them I was not at all happy to have been invited to the meeting only to find out I wouldn't have been able to hear anything except their decision, announced after the "executive session."

    I would like to see the report the county prosecutor wrote at the request of Nancy Grennan, which was supposed to inform the commissioner's decision. It would appall me if the prosecutor suggested that they change the ordinance and the commissioners ignored even that.
    An FOIA request would prove or disprove that point.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

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    Ajetpilot

    The park at Jackson and Lund was just taken over by the county, and has a nice area set aside for HorseShoe pitching...has a covered area for bar b q

    Maybe an OC horseShoe party/picnic could happen some weekend...We can invite the commissioners.

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    Get a lawyer, then when you get arrested in a county park for legally carrying a firearm, sue them for false arrest.

    That might change their mind.

    Other than that, I can't think of anything.

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    Sorry I wasn't able to make it Bruce. I really was planning on to but things came up. And since they didn't remove this invaild law I am sure that we will see them in court again.

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    Thanks for the support, Mainsail. I read that you are meeting sv_Libertarian for coffee next week. If it’s in our neck of the woods, can I join you? PM me.



    Sean-1286: Thanks for your past letters to the Commissioners. I don’t know how much good more letters will do. They may have tabled this issue indefinitely. I think they don’t want to appear “soft on guns” to their liberal constituents, so action may never be taken. I don’t know if the prosecutor actually committed his brief to paper. After I was booted from the room, it was the prosecutor’s representative who briefed the Commissioners. We will never know what she said.



    Trigger Dr: There are so few of us that open carry on the peninsula, and our schedules are so varied, that a picnic might be a real disappointment. When the weather warms a bit, however, it would be interesting to see what kind of a turnout we could get. I haven’t played horseshoes for a long time, but maybe you could give me some pointers.



    G27: Thanks for trying to get there. I’m retired, so my schedule is pretty open. Hope to meet you sometime.



    Now, I guess the ball is in the sheriff’s court. He knows that I open carry at the Bandix Dog Park, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see one of his deputies there some morning.



    I took an oath over forty years ago to “support and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” I’m still bound by that oath. I support it now by exercising my constitutionally guaranteed rights, because a right not exercised is a right lost.



    The dogs are getting anxious to go visit their friends, so I’ve got to head for the park now. Wish me luck.

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    Son of a b----!

    Will have to see if I can get over there sometime.

    The way I see it is sooner or later they will have to change the law. If you get arrested/cited for OC, then a court will have to see things your way.

    Methinks a letter writing campaign is in order. Beyond that, retain a lawyer... Just not the week for OC'ers is it?



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    Regular Member eBratt's Avatar
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    Yesterday was my wife's birthday, so I wasn't planning on attending...and to top it off, the whole house was sick. Sorry I couldn't make it.

    I'd be up for a gathering, especially anytime here in December as I am out of school for the rest of the year. Warmer weather picnics sound great as well.
    "The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference - they deserve a place of honor with all that's good" - George Washington
    "Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest." - Mahatma Gandhi

    As always, insert standard IANAL disclaimer here.

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    Ajetpilot wrote:
    When the “executive session” was concluded, I was ushered back into the conference room, and I was informed that they had decided NOT to change Kitsap County Code to conform to Washington State law. They said they had issues with carrying firearms in County buildings.
    So does WA law allow localities to ban gun carry in County buildings?

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    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    With what they said to you, it sounds like getting a FOIA in for the whole proceeding and sending it to the State AG would be prudent with a letter telling them that this locality is knowingly and willingly violating state law.

    My guess is that they'll likely get a nice little phone call about ****'ing and changing both their attitudes and laws.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
    KF7GEA

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    Had a great day at the park. The Sheriff didn't show up, so maybe he and the prosecutor have decided that any action against me would be a non-starter. Then I had a lot of errands to run, and I OD'ed the entire day. As usual, no problems.

    Mike wrote:
    So does WA law allow localities to ban gun carry in County buildings?
    According to RCW 9.41.300, the onlygovernment buildings that one is not allowed to carry in are: restricted access areas of a jail, or of a law enforcement facility; those areas in any building which are used in connection with court proceedings; the restricted access areas of a public mental health facility; and the restricted access areas of a commercial service airport. Kitsap County used to have only one building that housed the courthouse and the county administration. About a year ago, a new building was completed, and the county administration left the courthouse. They put up a "no weapons allowed" sign at the entrance, and that should not be there. In order to attend the meeting, I had to store my firearm in the area provided at the entrance to the courthouse and walk across the street to the new administration building. That is not in accordance with Washington State law, so they do have a problem that will have to be solved. However, yesterday I was only focused on the parks issue.[/b]

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    Ajetpilot wrote:
    Then I had a lot of errands to run, and I OD'ed the entire day.
    So how'd that go for you?

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    heresolong wrote:
    So how'd that go for you?
    I had a great day. In addition to the park visit, I had lunch at a restaurant and made stops at four different stores. As usual, no one even commented on my firearm. Just your standard, uneventful day here in God's Country.

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    Ajetpilot wrote:
    Mike wrote:
    So does WA law allow localities to ban gun carry in County buildings?
    According to RCW 9.41.300, the onlygovernment buildings that one is not allowed to carry in are: restricted access areas of a jail, or of a law enforcement facility; those areas in any building which are used in connection with court proceedings; the restricted access areas of a public mental health facility; and the restricted access areas of a commercial service airport. Kitsap County used to have only one building that housed the courthouse and the county administration. About a year ago, a new building was completed, and the county administration left the courthouse. They put up a "no weapons allowed" sign at the entrance, and that should not be there. In order to attend the meeting, I had to store my firearm in the area provided at the entrance to the courthouse and walk across the street to the new administration building. That is not in accordance with Washington State law, so they do have a problem that will have to be solved. However, yesterday I was only focused on the parks issue.[/b]
    OK, so now that the County has stated that they will leave the preempted park ordinances banning gun carry in parks on the books, you might as well move on the challenging the County Building gun ban - if you are sure they are preempted, just walk in open carrying.

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    Mike wrote:
    OK, so now that the County has stated that they will leave the preempted park ordinances banning gun carry in parks on the books, you might as well move on the challenging the County Building gun ban - if you are sure they are preempted, just walk in open carrying.
    I'll tell you what, Mike. When I take my shower tonight, I'll check and see how big a set I have. Do you know how many deputies are walking around that building? If Mainsail is ready to come and bail me out, I might do it.

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    One part of 9.41.300 that bothers me in this scenario is" those areas in any building which are used in connection with court proceedings;"

    Are there any of the court staff having offices in the building?

    Jim

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    Does Kittsap have an ordinance banning gun carry in their admin building? If so, what does it say? Or are are these toads just putting up no gun signs? Do they have metal detectors?

    Once we know the answers to those questions, a strategy may become easier to deduce.

    Perhaps start off slowly by asking the County manger to remove the illegal signs. This will get the ball rolling - if they have a good story why state law allows them to ban guns, they will likley tell you.

    I'm going to sticky this thread for now - I think you are on to somthing and can force them to take down the no-gun signs even if they won't back down and repeal their park gun ban ordinance.

    And let's keep Mainsail in reserve for now

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    Mike wrote:
    Does Kittsap have an ordinance banning gun carry in their admin building? If so, what does it say? Or are are these toads just putting up no gun signs? Do they have metal detectors?

    Once we know the answers to those questions, a strategy may become easier to deduce.

    Perhaps start off slowly by asking the County manger to remove the illegal signs. This will get the ball rolling - if they have a good story why state law allows them to ban guns, they will likley tell you.

    I'm going to sticky this thread for now - I think you are on to somthing and can force them to take down the no-gun signs even if they won't back down and repeal their park gun ban ordinance.

    And let's keep Mainsail in reserve for now
    I'm rather curious. Why do you think they will remove illegal signs from a building when they won't remove an illegal law from their books?

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    Trigger Dr wrote:
    One part of 9.41.300 that bothers me in this scenario is" those areas in any building which are used in connection with court proceedings;"

    Are there any of the court staff having offices in the building?

    Jim
    I'll research that, Jim. I'll get back to you.

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    gregma wrote:
    I'm rather curious. Why do you think they will remove illegal signs from a building when they won't remove an illegal law from their books?
    3reasons: (1) That has been the actual experience in other states like Virginia where ordinances are invalidated by state statute yet stay on the locality's books, the locality will bend under public pressure to remove the signs; (2) The sign itself presents a clear threat of enforcement enabling a civil action to have the sign declared invalid and the ordered removed, hence the locality wants to avoid this and related bad publicity about an "illegal sign"; and (3) I just checked the Kitsap ordiances online and found no ordinance banning gun carry in buildings per se, just an obvious preempted ordiance banning carry of loaded handguns off one's property anywhere in the County without a license to carry.

    So as it would appear that the County's no gun signs are not even within the scope of County ordinances, at least as applicable to permit holders, the signs posted appear to be "illegal." Like Bloomberg says"illegal guns," we can say "illegal signs."

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    Regular Member Ajetpilot's Avatar
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    Mike wrote:
    Does Kittsap have an ordinance banning gun carry in their admin building? If so, what does it say?

    I will research that as well, however, even if they do, it would be "preempted and repealed" by RCW 9.41.290 State Preemption.
    Do they have metal detectors?
    The metal detectors are immediately inside the front door of the courthouse across the street from the administration building. The firearms lock boxes are located there as well. There are no metal detectors at the administration building, just a sign that says no weapons with the gun in a red circle and a line through the gun.

    I think that my letters over a month and a half period stirred the pot. Probably, the prosecutor's staff started researching the firearms in parks issue and discovered that I was right about state preemption. They then expanded their research to include other places that the county bans firearms, and thought about all the county buildings. That is probably what was being discussed while I was excluded from the meeting.

    After I had been invited back, one of the three County Commissioners (Jan Angel) related a story about someone who walked into her office with a concealed weapon, and then exposed it in a threatening manner (I don't know the end of the story; I hope they caught the idiot!). It scared her badly, and she is now quite leery, naturally, of allowing firearms in county buildings. I think she is the lone conservative on the board, but she has a lot of reservations regarding firearms.

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    Ajetpilot wrote:
    There are no metal detectors at the administration building, just a sign that says no weapons with the gun in a red circle and a line through the gun.
    OK, so as there are apparently (1) no metal detectors at County buildings except the courthouse, and (2) no ordinance banning gun carry totoally in County buildings, and (3) the only ordiance banning cary generally has a permit holder exemption and (4) even that ordiance is preempted, I'd say you are in pretty good shape to demand that the signs be taken down.

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