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Thread: Tacoma Dome carry

  1. #1
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    Greetings all,

    I have searched the WA forum and did not find the answer I am seeking.

    I will be attending a show (Monster Jam) at the Tacoma Dome later this month and I am seeking information about carrying there (open or concealed). The Dome rules state no guns except for law enforcement on duty, but I could not determine whether state premption applies at this venue. I am assuming that, like the Everett Events Center, the dome is owned by the gov't but managed privately so that they can skate around premption. Does anyone have any information or experience to the contrary?

    Thank you for your help.

    Steve

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    "The Tacoma Dome is one of the largest wood domed structures in the world. It is owned and operated by the City of Tacoma’s Public Assembly Facilities Department. "

    http://www.tacomadome.org/history.aspx

    Therefore under state law they can not prevent you from carrying a firearm. At least that would be my reading.

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    I believe this actually falls under RCW 9.41.300:

    RCW 9.41.300
    Weapons prohibited in certain places — Local laws and ordinances — Exceptions — Penalty.
    I noted that i this article there are a couple items that caught my attention that might pertain to your question.

    2) Cities, towns, counties, and other municipalities may enact laws and ordinances:

    (a) Restricting the discharge of firearms in any portion of their respective jurisdictions where there is a reasonable likelihood that humans, domestic animals, or property will be jeopardized. Such laws and ordinances shall not abridge the right of the individual guaranteed by Article I, section 24 of the state Constitution to bear arms in defense of self or others; and

    (b) Restricting the possession of firearms in any stadium or convention center, operated by a city, town, county, or other municipality, except that such restrictions shall not apply to:

    (i) Any pistol in the possession of a person licensed under RCW 9.41.070 or exempt from the licensing requirement by RCW 9.41.060; or

    (ii) Any showing, demonstration, or lecture involving the exhibition of firearms.


    Please note that in section 2b-i. it recognizes that anyone licensed under RCW 9.41.070 is not subject to this RCW and is hereby void of this.

    RCW 9.41.070
    Concealed pistol license
    I am not a lawyer, or an expert but by my understanding, if you have a CPL then you are good to go. I however am very unsure of how OC would fall into this regulation. Please look over what I have read and the related RCW to make your own desicion however, this is just MY understanding, but I hope it helps out a bit.

    Here is the exact wording from the Tacoma Dome website:



    For the safety of all guests, weapons of any kind are not permitted in the Tacoma Dome. The only exception to this is law enforcement personnel in the performance of their official duties. The presenter of an event ticket consents to a reasonable search for weapons before entering. Failure to comply with the above conditions will result in not being admitted to the event or ejection. If a patron is not admitted to the event they will be refunded their money. However if a patron enters the Tacoma Dome and is ejected for any reason, no refunds or exchanges will be allowed in such an event.

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    I'd say that their policy is clearly overrulled by state law and that anyone with a concealed pistol license has every right to enter while carrying.

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    Since the facilities operations manager has a City of Tacoma one could, along with thier comment that it is owned and operated by a city department, reasonably assume it is operated by the city and therefore falls under the scope of
    9.41.300 (2b).

    The fact that it does not appear to be a law or ordinance is what I question. 9.41.300 says that municipalities may not create laws or ordinances, this is not either, it is a policy. I do agree with heresolong however that the rcw overrides a municipalities policy.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    joeroket wrote:
    Since the facilities operations manager has a City of Tacoma one could, along with thier comment that it is owned and operated by a city department, reasonably assume it is operated by the city and therefore falls under the scope of
    9.41.300 (2b).

    The fact that it does not appear to be a law or ordinance is what I question. 9.41.300 says that municipalities may not create laws or ordinances, this is not either, it is a policy. I do agree with heresolong however that the rcw overrides a municipalities policy.
    I don' t think it makes any difference what you call it. If a city writes a rule they can call it anything they want. If it is a law or ordinance then it has the force of law. It it is a rule then it has no force in law and they have no right to enforce it anyway.

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    pardon my naivety,

    While it (theTDOME)may be subject to state exemption, wouldn't the purchased ticket contract termsoverride the state exemption?

    ie, since you bought the ticket, you agreed to the terms of the ticket, and the event, thus you're not allowed to carry there. I don't know of any State exemptions that override legal contracts. Has anyone ever shown this to be the case?

    If one went there for a free public tour of the Dome,I would suggest that State exemption would apply, as it's a public place, managed by the state, open to the public (for that tour), thusone could carry.

    Thanks for your edifying comments.

    Kind regards

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    (b) Restricting the possession of firearms in any stadium or convention center, operated by a city, town, county, or other municipality, except that such restrictions shall not apply to: (i) Any pistol in the possession of a person licensed under RCW 9.41.070 or exempt from the licensing requirement by RCW 9.41.060; or (ii) Any showing, demonstration, or lecture involving the exhibition of firearms.
    If the Tacoma Dome is owned, operated, and managed by the City of Tacoma then you have every right to carry there. If you conceal carry, there shouldn't be a problem. I've never been frisked at any events so far. If you open carry, you are a fool. There is no possible way you would be able to keep yourself in reasonable level of awareness to prevent someone from jumping you or worse. All the noise, crowds, and other things going on, it would be impossible. If you have a CCW, do it. If not, well, I guess it's up to you.

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    I looooooooove double posts when you only push once.

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    How 'bout this argument:

    Because the promoter is leasing the venue during the event, the venue is private property during the event. The promoter can set rules for conduct on the private property.

    If you make inquiries about this with the city attorney's office, I'll bet that's the answer you will get.

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    user2050 wrote:
    pardon my naivety,

    While it (theTDOME)may be subject to state exemption, wouldn't the purchased ticket contract termsoverride the state exemption?

    ie, since you bought the ticket, you agreed to the terms of the ticket, and the event, thus you're not allowed to carry there. I don't know of any State exemptions that override legal contracts. Has anyone ever shown this to be the case?

    If one went there for a free public tour of the Dome,I would suggest that State exemption would apply, as it's a public place, managed by the state, open to the public (for that tour), thusone could carry.

    Thanks for your edifying comments.

    Kind regards
    It's not that the ticket says you can or cannot carry (and I agree that the ticket is a contract), it's that if the stadium is government-run, then it May Notcontradict the RCW with regards to firearms, due to preemption in 9.41.290. For example, they could put a sign that said "No Blacks or Hispanics" on the door, but since that's not allowed by law, it's invalid and can't legally be enforced. IANAL.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
    KF7GEA

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    deanf wrote:
    How 'bout this argument:

    Because the promoter is leasing the venue during the event, the venue is private property during the event. The promoter can set rules for conduct on the private property.

    If you make inquiries about this with the city attorney's office, I'll bet that's the answer you will get.
    The lawsimply says if it is operated by a city or county then they may only enact laws that do not apply to CPL holders. The word operated is the key to the law. The promoter is not operating the dome, they are simply utilizing the space.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

  13. #13
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    I understand and agree, but this argument has been sucessfully used in the past by bureaucrats.

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    Thanks for all of the replies so far. I am surprised that the T. Dome is operated by the city. I will keep an eye on this thread as I am interested in whether anyone has any firsthand knowledge or experience with this particular venue.

    G27, I agree that only a fool would open carry at an event such as this where the crowds are going to be large and tight. I mentioned open carry in my original post on the principal that I posted this question on the open carry web site.

    Regards,

    Steve

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    deanf wrote:
    I understand and agree, but this argument has been sucessfully used in the past by bureaucrats.
    Maybe so but the dome is not private property, even if it is leased out. It is still considered a public facility. I don't think they could get away with it on this issue.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    I don't think they could get away with it on this issue.
    They might loose in court, but no one has been willing to take it that far. I dealt with the general counsel of Qwest Field on this vary issue back when the stadium opened. The private-property-while-leased argument is the one they used. You can't really counter it and hope to change their mind without going to court.

    And part of me still thinks that the private-property-while-leasing argument is a valid one. The RCW makes reference to "Cities, towns, counties, and other municipalities" enacting laws or ordinances. An event promoter who controls the property under the lease is not a city, town, country, or municipality making a law or ordinance.

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    If memory serves correct Qwest Filed is not actually operated by the state or city. It merely oversees the facility in the same fashion that the Everett Public Utilities oversees the Everett Events Center. The two pubic orgs don't actually deal with the day to day operations of them they simply oversee the facilities and make sure that the operator is in compliance with the contract.

    The Tacoma Dome is in fact operated by a city dept. They do not contract out the operations to a third party.

    This is the difference between them and why Qwest Field and The Everett Events Center can have policies that restrict firearms and enforce those policies by refusing entry or removal from the property. Nobody that leases one of these facilities for an event controls the operations of it, that is still maintained by the company or municipality that operates it. They are simply leasing the facility to utilize the space. It is no different than you leasing a banquet room for a night. You do not operate it you are simply utilizing it and paying a fee to cover expenses that are incurred by the operator.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    deanf wrote:
    I don't think they could get away with it on this issue.
    They might loose in court, but no one has been willing to take it that far. I dealt with the general counsel of Qwest Field on this vary issue back when the stadium opened. The private-property-while-leased argument is the one they used. You can't really counter it and hope to change their mind without going to court.

    And part of me still thinks that the private-property-while-leasing argument is a valid one. The RCW makes reference to "Cities, towns, counties, and other municipalities" enacting laws or ordinances. An event promoter who controls the property under the lease is not a city, town, country, or municipality making a law or ordinance.
    If you lease government property it is still government property. It can't become private property via a lease. They are just hoping nobody challenges them as they know they will lose.

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    If you lease government property it is still government property. It can't become private property via a lease.
    Right, and in the context of lease of a public facility, it is not becoming private property.

    But doesn't a lessor or a renter assume all private property rights? And wouldn't their rules not be laws or ordinances (thus not subject to the preemption RCW), but regulations and rules of conduct that they have the authority to enforce as de facto owners of the property during the term of the lease?

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    deanf wrote:
    If you lease government property it is still government property. It can't become private property via a lease.
    Right, and in the context of lease of a public facility, it is not becoming private property.

    But doesn't a lessor or a renter assume all private property rights? And wouldn't their rules not be laws or ordinances (thus not subject to the preemption RCW), but regulations and rules of conduct that they have the authority to enforce as de facto owners of the property during the term of the lease?
    Why would the lessor assume private property rights to public property?
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    If one assumes all the rights, one also assumes all the restrctions on said rights.

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    I think the real question is do you want to see the show or not....because all things aside, if someone sees it or you open carry I would be willing to bet right or wrong you will be escorted off the premises or to some small room until the local constabulary figures out their interpretation of the law. I feel you should be able to carry concealed because the RCW covers that.....open carry is still kind of new to alot of folks and I think you will forfeit the evening to make your point...which is worth more to you right now? Maybe a letter to the city attorney outlining the RCW and asking how they can restrict your rights with a CC to the state Attorney General would be effective.

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    The big question here though would still be who is creating the rule? If every ticket to every event has that wording printed on it I find it unlikely that each individual lessee who puts on an event independently comes up with the idea. It is much more likely that the city, as the manager of the facility, has a ticket already laid out which contains all the needed info and all the lessee does is provide the specific information for their event. If this is the case, then the city is still creating a situation where we are illegally being restricted in violation of state law.

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    heresolong wrote:
    The big question here though would still be who is creating the rule? If every ticket to every event has that wording printed on it I find it unlikely that each individual lessee who puts on an event independently comes up with the idea. It is much more likely that the city, as the manager of the facility, has a ticket already laid out which contains all the needed info and all the lessee does is provide the specific information for their event. If this is the case, then the city is still creating a situation where we are illegally being restricted in violation of state law.
    The rule has already been created. It was created by the operators of the Tacoma Dome which happens to be the City of Tacoma. I would imagine the the company leasing the dome would be bound by contract to agree to the rules and policies already in place.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    Joeroket,

    But the City is simply has no authority to do that!

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