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Thread: City/County Municipal Code Resource

  1. #1
    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    So, I had a beast of a time finding the Edmonds city code to check their laws on firearms and if they had any regarding parks, as I got the runaround from the parks director who thought possession in the parks was illegal, but said he'd forward my number to the EPD, as he wasn't 100% sure after I told him it would be preempted by 9.41.290.

    After searching for about 15 minutes, I found the link to the code online, but it was broken (server error). Then, a google search turned up the parent site and I found that this site has a whole BUNCH of city codes and they're searchable!

    Check it out!: http://www.mrsc.org/codes.aspx

    This will be great for determining if city codes are within spec in regards to Preemption and in cases where LEO's say someone is breaking a city ordinance or code.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
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    Founder's Club Member Jim675's Avatar
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    Great find! The reading begins...

  3. #3
    Founder's Club Member Jim675's Avatar
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    Well that didn't take long. The first contestant is...
    The City of Shoreline for failure to understand preemption:

    8.12.490 Firearms, weapons. No person except duly authorized law enforcement personnel shall possess a firearm, bow and arrow, crossbow, or air or gas weapon in a city park. No person shall discharge across, in, or onto any park area a firearm, bow and arrow, crossbow, air or gas weapon, or any device capable of injuring or killing any person or animal, or damaging or destroying any public or private property. This section shall not apply where the department has authorized, in writing, a special recreational activity upon finding that it is not inconsistent with park use. [Ord. 195 §1, 1999]


  4. #4
    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    DING! DING! DING!... We have a Weeeeener!

    Good catch there Jim. That's prime material. What's funny is I OC at the Sheri's in Shoreline and have seen the Shoreline PD, Seattle PD, and WA SP there on multiple occasions without incident. I'm also well-known and well-liked by most of the staff there.

    Yes, I understand that's not the same as the city park, but it's interesting that the PD doesn't seem to have issue with it in public areas, yet the muni-code is rather draconian with the city parks.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
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  5. #5
    Founder's Club Member Jim675's Avatar
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    First letter if off to Ian Sievers, City Attorney of Shoreline, with a CC to Dick Deal of Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services.

  6. #6
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    Great site! Much as I expected, Oly is in good shape. Wouldn't do to have the Capitol City in violation of state law! :P

  7. #7
    Founder's Club Member Jim675's Avatar
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    But wait, there's more! (This could go on for years.) Next up: Everett.

    10.78.080 Carrying firearm on public conveyance. A.It is unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to carry, place on, or cause to be carried or placed on any public conveyance within the city limits any firearm unless the firearm shall be broken down or encased, and from which all ammunition shall be first removed, unless the person shall be a peace officer duly authorized to carry the weapon in the furtherance of his duty.

    B.Any person violating any of the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. (Ord. 1145-85 § 132, 1985)
    Letter to follow...






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    Yep, I found two instances for kent which are out of line.

    1 is a parks rule which says that any person except LEO cant posess a firearm.

    2 an area known as kent commons is a no-no for firearms except for CPL holders and LEO's.


    Update: email sent to the kent city attorney regarding the two codes. I'll keep you guys posted.

  9. #9
    Campaign Veteran Right Wing Wacko's Avatar
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    Looks like Snohomish hasa similar problem.


    13.04.070 Firearms--Fireworks--


    Weapons
    . It is unlawful to shoot, fire, or explode any firearm, fireworks, firecracker, torpedo, or explosive of any kind or to carry any firearm or to shoot or fire any air gun, paint ball guns, bows and arrows, BB gun, or use any slingshot in any park. (Ord. 1387,1978)


    Provided, this section should not apply to law enforcement personnel or to department of parks and recreation employees acting pursuant to or in accordance with rules and regulations of the Park Director. (Ord. 2132, 2007



    It might be time for me to go geocaching in Snohomish. There are a couple caches in Snohomish parks I havn't found yet!

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    Awesome find Justacar, Looks like the ban on carrying firearms on Everett's buses was enacted in 1985, when was state preemption enacted again?

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    rysa wrote:
    Yep, I found two instances for kent which are out of line.

    1 is a parks rule which says that any person except LEO cant posess a firearm.

    2 an area known as kent commons is a no-no for firearms except for CPL holders and LEO's.


    Update: email sent to the kent city attorney regarding the two codes. I'll keep you guys posted.
    I believe someone already addressed the Kent Commons issue. I think the outcome was the city feels it is a convention center and therefore are allowed to limit firearm possession to CPL holders under 9.41.300. This would (unfortunately) seem to be plausible by standard definitions of a convention center.

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    Regular Member Gene Beasley's Avatar
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    Okay y'all. I've been working on this compilation for a couple of months now. This may make it easier than navigating through each site; though that's good practice (Lord am I well practiced!). The compilation looks at four main points:

    • Parks (includes cemeteries)
    • Council chambers (or any city/county building not covered by .300)
    • Alcohol (primarily establishments with language broader that .300)
    • Executive Revocation (not fully vetted, but it appears the Governor is the only one that can declare marshal law in the event of an emergency)
    My goal in all this was for everyone in the state to be able to see at a glance, what problem areas they might run into and what areas they might want to employ a little activism.

    The columns contain either the code number is it appears to be in violation of 9.41.290 or None (also unav if their code was not online). If there is a code number, the cell will have a comment that contains the text of the code. When I first started this, I edited portions of sentences that didn't apply. I tried to track all of those down and include the complete code, only omitting the sections that didn't apply.

    At the risk of offending, here is abrief Excel tutorial, as this uses some features that may not be familiar.

    The spreadsheet contains both cities and counties. As saved, it is sorted by county, then city. The first column is hidden and only contains an A or B, to make the county appear at the top of the list when filtered.

    The column headers should always be visible using 'freeze panes'. Each column can be filtered using the down arrow. You would typically want to filter by county column, but you can do any combination. When you want to go back to seeing everything, hit the down arrow and select ALL. When a filter is active, the down arrow will be blue instead of black.

    The spreadsheet was created with my preferences in mind; resolution at 1600x1200, if you're viewing it at something less, it may not display well.

    To see the comment, hover over a cell with a red upper-right corner. You can edit the text (or resize the comment box), by right-clicking on the cell and choosing 'edit comment'.
    Gene Beasley (trying to get my username changed)


    Standard disclaimer: IANAL, YMMV - double check everything that you might quote or take action on.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  13. #13
    Campaign Veteran Right Wing Wacko's Avatar
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    While browsing the codes of several cities in eastern washington that I visit often I discovered several of them have this wording:
    [size=
    9.12.040 Exemption from state gun control laws.][/size] Pursuant to the authority granted by RCW 9.41.050(6) the prohibitions contained in RCW 9.41.050(4) shall not apply within the corporate limits of the City. (Ord. 94-23 §1, 1994).


    This does not seem to jive with the current wording of 9.41.050



    From one of the cities web sites I was able to gather this had something to do with open display of long guns within a vehicle.


  14. #14
    Regular Member Gene Beasley's Avatar
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    Right Wing Wacko wrote:
    This does not seem to jive with the current wording of 9.41.050

    From one of the cities web sites I was able to gather this had something to do with open display of long guns within a vehicle.



    CERTIFICATION OF ENROLLMENT



    ENGROSSED SECOND SUBSTITUTE HOUSE BILL 2319


    Chapter 7, Laws of 1994

    CHAPTER NO. CORRECTED

    (partial veto)

    53rd Legislature

    1994 1st Special Session

    VIOLENCE REDUCTION PROGRAMS


    [snipped much]

    Sec. 405. RCW 9.41.050 and 1982 1st ex.s. c 47 s 3 are each amended to read as follows:

    (1) Except in the person's place of abode or fixed place of business, a person shall not carry a pistol concealed on his or her person without a license to carry a concealed ((weapon)) pistol.

    (2) ((A person who is in possession of an unloaded pistol shall not leave the unloaded pistol in a vehicle unless the unloaded pistol is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view from outside the vehicle.

    (3))) A person shall not carry or place a loaded pistol in any vehicle unless the person has a license to carry a concealed ((weapon)) pistol and: (a) The pistol is on the licensee's person, (b) the licensee is within the vehicle at all times that the pistol is there, or (c) the licensee is away from the vehicle and the pistol is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view from outside the vehicle.

    (3) A person at least eighteen years of age who is in possession of an unloaded pistol shall not leave the unloaded pistol in a vehicle unless the unloaded pistol is locked within the vehicle and concealed from view from outside the vehicle.

    (4) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, no person may carry a firearm unless it is unloaded and enclosed in an opaque case or secure wrapper or the person is:

    (a) Licensed under RCW 9.41.070 to carry a concealed pistol;

    (b) In attendance at a hunter's safety course or a firearms safety course;

    (c) Engaging in practice in the use of a firearm or target shooting at an established range authorized by the governing body of the jurisdiction in which such range is located or any other area where the discharge of a firearm is not prohibited;

    (d) Engaging in an organized competition involving the use of a firearm, or participating in or practicing for a performance by an organized group that uses firearms as a part of the performance;

    (e) Hunting or trapping under a valid license issued to the person under Title 77 RCW;

    (f) In an area where the discharge of a firearm is permitted, and is not trespassing;

    (g) Traveling with any unloaded firearm in the person's possession to or from any activity described in (b), (c), (d), (e), or (f) of this subsection, except as provided in (h) of this subsection;

    (h) Traveling in a motor vehicle with a firearm, other than a pistol, that is unloaded and locked in the trunk or other compartment of the vehicle, secured in a gun rack, or otherwise secured in place in a vehicle;

    (i) On real property under the control of the person or a relative of the person;

    (j) At his or her residence;

    (k) Is a member of the armed forces of the United States, national guard, or organized reserves, when on duty;

    (l) Is a law enforcement officer; or

    (m) Carrying a firearm from or to a vehicle for the purpose of taking or removing the firearm to or from a place of business for repair.

    (5) Nothing in this section permits the possession of firearms illegal to possess under state or federal law.

    (6) Any city, town, or county may enact an ordinance to exempt itself from the prohibition of subsection (4) of this section.




    When I first ran across this, that was my first thought as well, (WTF over?). 1994 was the bad time for carry. Now when I see these obsolete references, it tells me that at least at the time (changing demographics and all), that legislative body was making a pro-carry statement (or at least not buying into the anti statement).

  15. #15
    Founder's Club Member - Moderator Gray Peterson's Avatar
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    Jim675 wrote:
    But wait, there's more! (This could go on for years.) Next up: Everett.

    10.78.080 Carrying firearm on public conveyance. A.It is unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to carry, place on, or cause to be carried or placed on any public conveyance within the city limits any firearm unless the firearm shall be broken down or encased, and from which all ammunition shall be first removed, unless the person shall be a peace officer duly authorized to carry the weapon in the furtherance of his duty.

    B.Any person violating any of the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. (Ord. 1145-85 § 132, 1985)
    Letter to follow...




    No need. Everett PD acknowledged that preemption makes this law invalid. This was from me dealing with them last year. I'll try to dig up the emails and notes.

  16. #16
    Regular Member Shy_Panda's Avatar
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    So am I understanding this correctly? Cities are able to remove themself from preemption merely by saying so? I don't understand how this works, the state has said that the laws of lower governments are not as important and then went ahead and said that they can do whatever they want? I really hope I am reading this wrong.

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    The above cite of 9.41.050 is not as it currently reads.

  18. #18
    Regular Member Shy_Panda's Avatar
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    Chalk up another one.

    Spokane Parks:

    Section 10.10.040 Public Park

    F. No person may in any park:


    1. possess any dangerous weapon as defined in chapter 9.41 RCW, unless authorized by park department rule, regulation or special permission of the park board, park department or police department; or
    2. shoot, fire or explode any firearm, fireworks, explosive, bow and arrow, slingshot or other weapon, toy or real, which discharges a pellet or other object with harmful force.

  19. #19
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    The big confusion comes from the fact that Cities and Counties "Adopt" language from State RCW's. They do this so they can prosecute for infractions in their jurisdiction rather than turn it over to State for prosecution. Therein lies the problem. They merely Adopt and then fail to REVISE when the State does so. The State Law may preempt but the references still remain in City and County Code Ordinances. These jurisdictions are either too lazy or stupid to realize that they need to revise their codes when those that they have adopted from State Code are changed.
    "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?"

  20. #20
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    Looks like we have some work to do in Vancouver


    Section 15.04.060 Firearms and fireworks.

    Firearms, fireworks, bows, arrows, and sling shots are prohibited in any park. <snip>
    Camas


    12.32.150 Firearms.

    No person shall in any park at any time, bring into, have in his possession, or discharge a revolver, pistol, shotgun, rifle, bow and arrow, crossbow, slingshot, spring or gas propelled b-b or pellet gun, spear, or javelin, or any other weapon, except in designated target range areas. (Ord. 1780 § 17, 1991)
    and the whole of Clark Countyas well:

    9.04.190 Firearms.

    No person shall, at any time, bring into or upon the properties of the county, nor have in their possession, nor discharge a revolver, pistol, shotgun, rifle, bow and arrow, crossbow, slingshot, spring or gas propelled b-b and pellet guns, spears or javelins, or any other weapon, except in designated target range areas. (Ord. 1976-05-43 (part), 1976)
    (though I thought we got them cleared up last year?)

    Battle Ground OTOH seems to be in compliance! (Amazingly enough, if you're familiar with 'that town'):what:



  21. #21
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    I found this for Puyallup.

    9.20.050 Fireworks, firearms, and weapons.
    It is unlawful to shoot, fire or explode any fireworks, firecrackers, torpedos or explosives of any kind or to carry any firearms, air guns, bows and arrows, B-B guns, or use any slingshot in any park unless a written permit has been obtained from the parks director. (Ord. 2840 §2, 2005; Ord. 2105 § 2, 1986; Ord. 1733 § 4, 1978).

    Is having the sentence :"unless a written permit has been obtained from the parks director" a way of getting around the states preemption?

  22. #22
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    CC27 wrote:
    I found this for Puyallup.

    9.20.050 Fireworks, firearms, and weapons.
    It is unlawful to shoot, fire or explode any fireworks, firecrackers, torpedos or explosives of any kind or to carry any firearms, air guns, bows and arrows, B-B guns, or use any slingshot in any park unless a written permit has been obtained from the parks director. (Ord. 2840 §2, 2005; Ord. 2105 § 2, 1986; Ord. 1733 § 4, 1978).

    Is having the sentence :"unless a written permit has been obtained from the parks director" a way of getting around the states preemption?
    My answer would be, NO!. The lawcan't be more strict than state law and you don't need anyones permission to carry except the State of Washington.

  23. #23
    Campaign Veteran Right Wing Wacko's Avatar
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    CC27 wrote:
    I found this for Puyallup.

    9.20.050 Fireworks, firearms, and weapons.
    It is unlawful to shoot, fire or explode any fireworks, firecrackers, torpedos or explosives of any kind or to carry any firearms, air guns, bows and arrows, B-B guns, or use any slingshot in any park unless a written permit has been obtained from the parks director. (Ord. 2840 §2, 2005; Ord. 2105 § 2, 1986; Ord. 1733 § 4, 1978).

    Is having the sentence :"unless a written permit has been obtained from the parks director" a way of getting around the states preemption?
    Apply for the permit, and when it's declined you will have a standing in court with actual damages

  24. #24
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    Check this out for Whatcom County:

    "9.32.085 Unlawful firearms and/or weapons in parks. A.It is unlawful within a county-owned park for any person to:
    1.Display, exhibit or draw any firearm or dangerous weapon; or
    2.Leave any firearm or dangerous weapon unattended and unsecured, or exposed to public view;...."



    That's ringing bells



  25. #25
    Campaign Veteran Right Wing Wacko's Avatar
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    carhark wrote:
    Check this out for Whatcom County:

    "9.32.085 Unlawful firearms and/or weapons in parks. A.It is unlawful within a county-owned park for any person to:
    1.Display, exhibit or draw any firearm or dangerous weapon; or
    2.Leave any firearm or dangerous weapon unattended and unsecured, or exposed to public view;...."



    That's ringing bells

    I think Whatcom county has been taken care of thanks to Lonnie.

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