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Thread: De Pere, WI city council votes to repeal unlawful ordinance which banned open carry

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    UPDATE: http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/...908050617/1978

    De Pere allows open guns, some hunting near river


    By Patti Zarling • Pzarling@greenbaypressgazette.com • August 5, 2009 DE PERE —

    It soon will be legal to openly carry a firearm in most of the city, as well as hunt waterfowl in certain areas near the Fox River.

    The City Council on Tuesday reached a tie vote on two changes to its ordinance concerning firearms, with Mayor Mike Walsh breaking the tie by voting in favor of both.

    One allows people to openly carry firearms in most parts of the city. Previously, it was against the law to carry a gun in the city unless you had a permit to hunt nuisance animals or to hunt migratory birds and waterfowl in certain parts of the city.

    The city made the move to allow the open carry of firearms to conform to a memorandum from state Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen to district attorneys in spring saying the state constitution gives people the right to keep and bear arms.

    Some council members criticized the idea.

    "I have a lot of trouble with people being able to walk around this city with a loaded weapon," Alderman Paul Kegel said.

    Alderman Carl Castelic agreed.

    "No one should have the right to carry a loaded gun down the street," he said. "It's just not safe, no matter what the (National Rifle Association) says. It doesn't make any sense to me."

    Walsh, too, expressed concern about people carrying firearms, but said he felt the city has no choice but to conform to the state ruling.

    The council focused most of its discussion Tuesday on whether to allow the hunting of waterfowl in areas along the Fox River.

    The city adopted a rule in the 1970s to accommodate hunting in a small portion of the southwest corner of De Pere. Tom Olejniczak, who's lived on Fox Ridge Court since 1979, told the council he's hunted ducks from the Fox River for decades with no problems and no complaints from neighbors.

    He further emphasized people can hunt from the east side of the river across from his property. That area lies in the town of Ledgeview. And the town of Lawrence allows hunting along the river south of De Pere.

    The council agreed to allow waterfowl hunting in portions of De Pere adjacent to unincorporated areas that allow hunting. Those unincorporated areas likely are to be annexed in the future, and then hunting would fade out, they said.

    The ordinance changes must go through a second reading before becoming official.

    ----

    As I've done for both Green Bay and Ashwaubenon, I read the City of De Pere's municipal codes. And not only does it ban the carrying of firearms, they specifically ban the OPEN carry of loaded firearms. Clearly this is unlawful, and so I've written the Mayor and entire counsel. The Ordinance is below:



    Sec. 142-2. Loading and discharge of weapons. (a) No person shall carry or have under his control any firearm, air rifle, pellet gun, BB gun, slingshot or other weapon that projects any type of missile in public while such weapon is loaded or uncased or uncovered. (b) No person shall discharge, or cause to be discharged, any weapon within the city limits as defined in this section, except as provided: (1) For use in the hunting of migratory birds and waterfowl in that portion of the Fox River south of the south city limits on the east side and south of the south curbline of Belle Avenue on the west side in accordance with state regulations. (2) For the purpose of elimination of animals, as authorized by the department of natural resources and the De Pere Police Department, and such decision may be appealed to the common council. (Code 1974, § 41.02; Ord. No. 02-04, §§ 1, 2-20-2002)

    If you live in or around De Pere, please write the City about this obviously unlawful local law. In a related story, I OC'd in the De Pere Walmart this evening and no one said boo.


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    It's a shame that I didn't OC while I lived in DePere, would have been nice to carry around the yard( I lived WELL within 1000ft of West DePere High school) gotta love private property. Of course I don't live too far from that particular Wal-Mart right now.I'm think I am going to have to take a trip out there very soon.
    Nemo Me Impune Lacesset

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    I received a reply from a councilman this afternoon. Apparently they are working on amending the ordinance. IT was on the agenda last meeting according to the website, but was tabled for unknown reasons.

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    http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/...908050617/1978





    Looks like they are retracting the ordinance

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    http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/...908050617/1978

    DE PERE — It soon will be legal to openly carry a firearm in most of the city, as well as hunt waterfowl in certain areas near the Fox River.

    The City Council on Tuesday reached a tie vote on two changes to its ordinance concerning firearms, with Mayor Mike Walsh breaking the tie by voting in favor of both.

    One allows people to openly carry firearms in most parts of the city. Previously, it was against the law to carry a gun in the city unless you had a permit to hunt nuisance animals or to hunt migratory birds and waterfowl in certain parts of the city.

    The city made the move to allow the open carry of firearms to conform to a memorandum from state Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen to district attorneys in spring saying the state constitution gives people the right to keep and bear arms.
    Some council members criticized the idea.

    "I have a lot of trouble with people being able to walk around this city with a loaded weapon," Alderman Paul Kegel said.

    Alderman Carl Castelic agreed.

    "No one should have the right to carry a loaded gun down the street," he said. "It's just not safe, no matter what the (National Rifle Association) says. It doesn't make any sense to me."

    Walsh, too, expressed concern about people carrying firearms, but said he felt the city has no choice but to conform to the state ruling.

    The council focused most of its discussion Tuesday on whether to allow the hunting of waterfowl in areas along the Fox River.

    The city adopted a rule in the 1970s to accommodate hunting in a small portion of the southwest corner of De Pere. Tom Olejniczak, who's lived on Fox Ridge Court since 1979, told the council he's hunted ducks from the Fox River for decades with no problems and no complaints from neighbors.

    He further emphasized people can hunt from the east side of the river across from his property. That area lies in the town of Ledgeview. And the town of Lawrence allows hunting along the river south of De Pere.

    The council agreed to allow waterfowl hunting in portions of De Pere adjacent to unincorporated areas that allow hunting. Those unincorporated areas likely are to be annexed in the future, and then hunting would fade out, they said.

    The ordinance changes must go through a second reading before becoming official.

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    I was not expecting the AG memo to law enforcement to cause the changes in ordinances. Because, previous to the memo, the municipalities were clearly in the wrong as far as preemption goes. And his memo addressed OC as DC, not preemption. That just goes to show how irrational fears to armed citizens are. It causes government officials to vote against changing an illegal ordinance to conform to the law.

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    RugerMan wrote:
    I was not expecting the AG memo to law enforcement to cause the changes in ordinances. Because, previous to the memo, the municipalities were clearly in the wrong
    That's not how it works though - the law and public policy follows precedent - it looks to the left and right and sees who is saying what - nobody wants to be blamed for somthing controversial. Evy baby step helps - every law suit helps - every time an anti-gun politician gets primaried, that helps too.

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    I am just pleased that they are taking these measures to reenforce the fact that open CarryIS Legal.
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

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    Doug Huffman wrote:
    http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/...908050617/1978

    Traitor Carl Castelic agreed.

    "No one should have the right to carry a loaded gun down the street," he said.
    Fixed!

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    is it time to have an O-C picnic in De pere? And make sure to invite the alderman that feel our 2A rights should be ignored.

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    Nutczak wrote:
    is it time to have an O-C picnic in De pere? And make sure to invite the alderman that feel our 2A rights should be ignored.
    take the ball and run with it, organize one.
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

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    A De Pere event would be great. It'd have to be on private property though, as there is an ordinance against firearms in De Pere parks.

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    RugerMan wrote:
    A De Pere event would be great. It'd have to be on private property though, as there is an ordinance against firearms in De Pere parks.
    I live right on the boarder of Ashwaubenon& DePere, I'm on the Ashwaubenon side& I am having that little get together next month here at my residence.
    http://youtu.be/xWgVGu3OR4U AACFI, Wisconsin / Minnesota Carry Certified. Action Pistol & Advanced Action pistol concepts + Urban Carbine course. When the entitlement Zombies begin looting, pillaging, raping, burning & killing..remember HEAD SHOTS it's the only way to kill a Zombie. Stockpile food & water now.

    Please support your local,county, state & Federal Law enforcement agencies, right ???

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    I live in Ashwaubenon on the De Pere border as well. I'd love to attend an OC function in the area. Especially since I will have to miss the GB event due to being in a wedding this weekend.

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    http://www.wbay.com/Global/story.asp?S=10854107From: ABC/ WBAY Channel 2

    De Pere Ordinance Would Allow Carrying Firearms


    By Jeff Alexander

    A change to a De Pere city ordinance will soon make it legal to carry a loaded firearm in the city, but even one city alder who voted for the change Tuesday night says he is uncomfortable with the decision.

    Alder James Boyd saysallowing people to openly carry a loaded gun in most of the city stems from a memorandum this spring from the state Attorney General.

    In that advisory letter to district attorneys, J.B. Van Hollen said the state constitution gives people the right to keep and bear arms.

    "I'm pretty certain everyone on the council, the mayor, the administrator felt strongly that we're not comfortable with the fact that people can carry loaded firearms in the city. That's got to be said upfront," Boyd said, "but based on the interpretation by J.B. Van Hollen, we didn't have a whole lot of choice but to comply."

    Previously it was against the law to carry a gun in De Pere unless you had a permit to hunt nuisance animals or waterfowl in certain parts of the city.

    Now the only places off limits to firearms in De Pere are schools, government buildings, and establishments that sell liquor.

    Boyd says De Pere is one of the first communities to deal with what he admits is a hotbed issue.

    "Now every city, village, township will have to revisit their ordinances to comply with state law."

    De Pere's firearm ordinance won't become official until later this month but it already has residents "up in arms."

    Out for a walk with his granddaughter today, Jack Meng, a hunter and gun rights advocate, is fired up over De Pere's firearms ordinance.

    "I think that's a shame. Accidents do happen and there's no need for anything like that. This isn't the Wild West," Meng said.

    Residents aren't buying the notion that walking down Main Street with a loaded shotgun is a necessary freedom.

    "I guess I go back to what the world was like when the Constitution was written and what people's lives were like, how they did need to protect themselves, and I just don't feel like it is a parallel with where we are right now. Makes me pretty uncomfortable," Cheryl Aslakson said.

    "I definitely understand concerns they have regarding that," Boyd responds, but he says any concerns should be directed to the state Attorney General's office.

    "We're really not behind allowing people to walk around with open firearms that aren't in a case, but we had no choice," he said.

    Residents fear it's only asking for trouble.

    "Whether it's loaded or not, just seeing a firearm out in public I think makes everybody anxious," said Meng.

    De Pere police declined to comment on the ordinance change.

    It remains illegal to carry a concealed weapon anywhere in the state without a permit.

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    *

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    The article makes it sound like it was NOT legal before....

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    Pointman wrote:
    As a comment on the reactions in the paper and on TV, people seem to forget about police carrying an arsenal.

    The other thing is blame-storming: I don't think people should be able to carry a loaded gun down the street. <--- should be ---> I don't think I should be able to carry a loaded gun down the street because I am not smart enough nor responsible enough to do so.

    An individual rarely sees themselves as less intelligent than the general population, and of course, 1/2 of them are, and in De Pere, it looks like over half...
    This is a pre-requisite for a dictator.

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    After sending a request to change this ordinance some weeks ago, I finally recieved a reply. I was not expecting such dripping contempt and sarcasm from an elected official.

    Mr ****,

    If you have been keeping up with the actions of the City Council, you can see that we are changing this ordinance to comply with State law, regardless of the fact that is is reckless and irresponsible. I sincerely hope that the "open carry" zealots do not have an accidental discharge that leads to a loss of life. The public backlash would be swift and extreme and could lead to all of us losing the right to own guns and hunt responsibly in rural or forested areas, not in unban downtown areas. I am a hunter and I do own guns, but I do so in a responsible manner and would never even considercarringa loaded gun around in heavily populated areas. Some people seem to think that you need a gun for personal protection. I am certain that you will not be mauled by a bear in downtown De Pere. Also we have a low crime rate so you have very little chance of being held up here. I cannot speak to the lawlessness of octogenarian friendly Florida, but here you do not need a firearm for daily protection. I have been just fine for 36 years, so the few months you have been here I am sure you have been just fine and will continue to be so.

    The ordinance has to be changed, I cannot do anything about that, but please do not screw up responsible hunting for the rest of us who choose to be smart about how we handle our firearms. I have already had the pleasure to be contacted by other open carry activists. They have their agenda, as you seem to as well, andI have mine. Cut out the public stupidity with your guns and do notgive cause for the courts to someday take away my rightto hunt in a responsible manner. This is my opinion and is not the opinion of the rest of the De Pere City Council.

    Carl Castelic

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    Mods accidentally move this to the wrong room? We're WA, they're WI, like "WI oh WI" is this thread in "Washington" .
    "If we were to ever consider citizenship as the least bit matter of merit instead of birthright, imagine who should be selected as deserved representation of our democracy: someone who would risk their daily livelihood to cast an individually statistically insignificant vote, or those who wrap themselves in the flag against slightest slights." - agenthex

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    RugerMan wrote:
    After sending a request to change this ordinance some weeks ago, I finally recieved a reply. I was not expecting such dripping contempt and sarcasm from an elected official.

    Mr ****, *

    If you have been keeping up with the actions of the City Council, you can see that we are changing this ordinance to comply with State law, regardless of the fact that is is reckless and irresponsible. I sincerely hope that the "open carry" zealots do not have an accidental discharge that leads to a loss of life. The public backlash would be swift and extreme and could lead to all of us losing the right to own guns and hunt responsibly in rural or forested areas, not in unban downtown areas. I am a hunter and I do own guns, but I do so in a responsible manner and would never even consider*carring*a loaded gun around in heavily populated areas. Some people seem to think that you need a gun for personal protection. I am certain that you will not be mauled by a bear in downtown De Pere. Also we have a low crime rate so you have very little chance of being held up here. I cannot speak to the lawlessness of octogenarian friendly Florida, but here you do not need a firearm for daily protection. I have been just fine for 36 years, so the few months you have been here I am sure you have been just fine and will continue to be so.*

    *
    The ordinance has to be changed, I cannot do anything about that, but please do not screw up responsible hunting for the rest of us who choose to be smart about how we handle our firearms. I have already had the pleasure to be contacted by other open carry activists. They have their agenda, as you seem to as well, and*I have mine. Cut out the public stupidity with your guns and do not*give cause for the courts to someday take away my right*to hunt in a responsible manner. This is my opinion and is not the opinion of the rest of the De Pere City Council.

    Carl Castelic
    http://www.nraila.org/Legislation/Read.aspx?ID=5095

    Considering he didn't even vote for it, I have bolded the BS statements. He acts like it was an inevitable unanimous decision. It wasn't. He stood against it. The "we" did not include him. Since he clearly refuses to comply with the law, he should be ejected from office.

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    Mr ****,

    If you have been keeping up with the actions of the City Council, you can see that we are changing this ordinance to comply with State law, regardless of the fact that is is reckless and irresponsible. I sincerely hope that the "open carry" zealots do not have an accidental discharge that leads to a loss of life. The public backlash would be swift and extreme and could lead to all of us losing the right to own guns and hunt responsibly in rural or forested areas, not in unban downtown areas. I am a hunter and I do own guns, but I do so in a responsible manner and would never even considercarringa loaded gun around in heavily populated areas. Some people seem to think that you need a gun for personal protection. I am certain that you will not be mauled by a bear in downtown De Pere. Also we have a low crime rate so you have very little chance of being held up here. I cannot speak to the lawlessness of octogenarian friendly Florida, but here you do not need a firearm for daily protection. I have been just fine for 36 years, so the few months you have been here I am sure you have been just fine and will continue to be so.

    The ordinance has to be changed, I cannot do anything about that, but please do not screw up responsible hunting for the rest of us who choose to be smart about how we handle our firearms. I have already had the pleasure to be contacted by other open carry activists. They have their agenda, as you seem to as well, andI have mine. Cut out the public stupidity with your guns and do notgive cause for the courts to someday take away my rightto hunt in a responsible manner. This is my opinion and is not the opinion of the rest of the De Pere City Council.

    Carl Castelic

    wow... just wow.


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