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Thread: I need you guys' advice on this...

  1. #1
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    Ok, so in light of Washington trying to ban guns in public parks lately (see also my post at: http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum55/31661-2.html) concerning Wenatchee's attempts to ban firearms from city parks and how it was in violation of RCW 9.41.290.

    I'm concerned by some rules I saw listed on the website for parks in East Wenatchee, WA. This is their website: http://www.eastmontparks.com/

    Under the section on Rules & Regulations Section #9 it states:

    No person shall openly display a firearm or weapon in any park area, nor shall any person discharge or propel across, in, or into any park area, a firearm, bow and arrow, spear, spear gun, harpoon, sling shot, BB gun, 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. No firearms or weapons are allowed in a Park without the written permission of the Director.

    As far as I can tell this is a public park of the city so it would have to be held accountable to state laws, specifically RCW 9.41.290 which prohibits the city from banning guns on city property and at facilities.

    Am I right? Is this a city park that has to follow these rules? I emailed them, but I won't have any information until they get back to me, but I will keep you all posted. If you have the chance, check out their page and tell me what you think.


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    Regular Member FMCDH's Avatar
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    Daath 474 wrote:
    Ok, so in light of Washington trying to ban guns in public parks lately (see also my post at: http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum55/31661-2.html) concerning Wenatchee's attempts to ban firearms from city parks and how it was in violation of RCW 9.41.290.

    As far as I can tell this is a public park of the city so it would have to be held accountable to state laws, specifically RCW 9.41.290 which prohibits the city from banning guns on city property and at facilities.

    Am I right? Is this a city park that has to follow these rules? I emailed them, but I won't have any information until they get back to me, but I will keep you all posted. If you have the chance, check out their page and tell me what you think.

    First of all, lets keep things accurate. Washington inst trying to ban any firearms anywhere, its the soon to be former mayor of Seattle that is trying to ban firearms at city owned and or operated recreational facilities.

    As far as other cities in Washington go with this kind of thing, it is estimated by many active members on this forum that wholly 30 to 50 percent of all cities and even some counties in Washington have this, or similar wording that is violation of state preemption, either newly enacted since preemption, or more commonly, left over city or county ordinances from days before preemption.

    Snohomish County, city of Bothell, city of Lake Forest Park, and city of Redmond are just a few near me that I have been personally trying to get to change their parks rules for nearly a year now.

    The overwhelming consensus that I have received back about my warnings and inquiries says that they will consider changing the law WHEN it becomes an issue, such as what Kitsap did when it started getting bad press about their gun ban in city parks.

    The long and short of it is, that state preemption ONLY allows counties, cities, towns and other municipalities to make rules or regulations that are specificaly allowed by state law, which is a pretty narrow scope when it comes to the actual carry of a firearm.
    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.290

    So basically, no, the city of Wenatchee cannot ban the open carry of a firearm by anyone that is in legal possession of that firearm to begin with. That goes for CPL or no CPL.

    Pay close attention to the last line of 9.41.290 where it says...."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, regardless of the nature of the code, charter, or home rule status of such city, town, county, or municipality."

    This means that even if a contradictory law or ordinance is on the books, its not on the books because it was automatically repealed by the authority of the state legislature as soon as the ink hit the paper.

    You may still get charged with a local violation, but the courts are bound to uphold the greater law of the land, and as long as you have your ducks in a row, you WILL win.

    Hope that helps.

    "Carry On!"


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    That is very interesting and thank you for sharing and helping to clarify a few things! At this point I am just trying to bring it to their attention, since it was already an issue just across the river in the same city. Wenatchee is separated by a river that divides two halves of the city into two different counties. Chelan county already revised their rules to reflect state law and allow gun carrying, but I wanted to check Douglas county as well. This is when I discovered this.... I'll keep you all posted with how it goes!

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    Regular Member j2l3's Avatar
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    They are quoting this code. Current Minicipal Code for East Wenatchee says:

    http://nt5.scbbs.com/cgi-bin/om_isap...DEST_12.12.040

    12.12.040Firearms and explosives.



    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, bows and arrows, B.B. gun or use any slingshot in any park except designated recreational areas provided for such activities. (1967 code § 8.40.040)


    I took this directly from their Municipal Code pages. It is in conflict with the RCW's.

    Wenatchee and East Wenatcheeis an interesting area. They are actually TWO different cities, each with their own government and Municipal Codes.

    East Wenatche is in Douglas County, not Grant County.

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    j2l3 wrote:
    They are quoting this code. Current Minicipal Code for East Wenatchee says:

    http://nt5.scbbs.com/cgi-bin/om_isap...DEST_12.12.040

    12.12.040Firearms and explosives.




    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, bows and arrows, B.B. gun or use any slingshot in any park except designated recreational areas provided for such activities. (1967 code § 8.40.040)


    I took this directly from their Municipal Code pages. It is in conflict with the RCW's.

    Wenatchee and East Wenatcheeis an interesting area. They are actually TWO different cities, each with their own government and Municipal Codes.

    East Wenatche is in Douglas County, not Grant County.
    Take a look at the effective date of this "Regulation" (1967). Premption didn't come into being for 30 more years. The City is just too lazy, or cheap, to revise their codes to bring them up to date. The "no firearms" part of the reg is unenforceable---period.
    "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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    East Wenatche is in Douglas County, not Grant County.
    You're right! I'm glad you caught that! I have no idea why I said Grant when I meant Douglas. I corrected it in the original reply on here now. I've lived here my whole life so I should know the name of the counties! Hahah.



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    I emailed Ray Heit, the chairman of the park governing board several days ago and I did not receive a reply. I also emailed Dave Schwab the director of the parks several days before that and I did not receive a reply.

    If I don't receive a reply during this week, I'm considering emailing the rest of the governing board and directors. If that fails to work, I am going to have to consider another option to get them to tell me why they have this rule listed. I can either show up at a board meeting and try to ask them or visit the local newspaper and try to bring public attention to it. Or both. I'm not sure what the best course of action is yet, but I'm giving them time to respond and giving myself time to think it out.

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    Daath 474 wrote:
    I emailed Ray Heit, the chairman of the park governing board several days ago and I did not receive a reply. I also emailed Dave Schwab the director of the parks several days before that and I did not receive a reply.

    If I don't receive a reply during this week, I'm considering emailing the rest of the governing board and directors. If that fails to work, I am going to have to consider another option to get them to tell me why they have this rule listed. I can either show up at a board meeting and try to ask them or visit the local newspaper and try to bring public attention to it. Or both. I'm not sure what the best course of action is yet, but I'm giving them time to respond and giving myself time to think it out.
    or organise OC picnic in one of the parks:celebrate

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    Regular Member j2l3's Avatar
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    The parks board can't change the muni code. Best to contact the city attorney and city council. They have the authority to make the changes. The parks board will then have to change the signs.

    There are many examples of how to do this on this forum. Sample letters as well that have worked.
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    Thank you J2l3, I will do that. It's all just simply writing and mailing them the information. Not a lot of work to it and it helps clarify a few things. People shouldn't have to be confused about the law.

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    I agree with you completely. That's why it's important to identify the right folks early and contact them. Most, once confronted with the facts, will see the right thing to do. Especially if they don't, as a city, have a lot of money to commit to litigation.

    I recommend approaching them in your correspondence from the point of view of trying tohelping them avoid law suits for unncessary and unlawful arrests.
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    You're absolutely right and that's absolutely what I was thinking. Think of the lawsuits over false arrest for anyone who OCs or CCs in the park and is arrested for nothing wrong? I will definitely point that out in further emails and discussions (if they get back to me) with the park board and the city council. I did say in my email that I was sending this email with the utmost respect for the park and the people of Wenatchee. It is important to have clarified laws that are up to date about such issues.

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    Regular Member j2l3's Avatar
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    Agreed.... hang in there, sounds like you will make a difference there.
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    Good news!

    I got a letter back from Ray Heit the chairman of the governing board at the park. I thanked him for his time reading my letter and told him that I would also contact the city council to have them check out that outdated municipal code.

    This is the letter he sent back to me:

    Code:
    "I have talked with our Parks Director on this subject and I believe it
    is to be a topic of discussion at our October 19th Board Meeting.  I
    think there will be a suggested wording change that states discharging a
    fire arm in a public park is unlawful.
    I hope this addresses your concern, Thank you for your interest in the
    Eastmont Metro Parks System.
    Ray Heit"

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    Update:

    I just wrote a letter to the #1 position on the East Wenatchee City Council.

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    Regular Member j2l3's Avatar
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    Well done, nice that people there are reasonable.
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    Good news!

    I just received an email from the chairman of the park board and he told me that while he wasn't present at the October 19th meeting, the wording has been changed in the rules and regulations section of the park!

    Finally it is clear and up to date with state laws and there is no rule against firearms in the city park. I'm very glad that this has been clarified and there will be no misunderstanding by law enforcement or civilians.

    I encourage anyone else to write or email any council members and chairmen in their cities if laws do not match up or make sense. We as individuals are very much able to make a difference that can be positively reflected in the community!

    I've never done something like this before and I am proud of myself for going through with writing and talking to individuals who could make the difference happen!

  18. #18
    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    Nice Job Daath 474.
    Im proudly straight. I'm free to not support Legalization, GLBT, Illegal Aliens, or the Islamization of America.

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