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Thread: Florida DEP Open Carry Issue - The RESOLUTION

  1. #1
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    Ladies and Gentlemen,

    I got involved with this board a few months ago and came across this issue while planning a local OC event. It has taken time and effort to bring this issue to this point but I am happy to inform you of the following notice I received this morning.
    ================================================== ======
    Dear Mr. xxxxx,
    I wanted to let you know the following is being promulgated to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection:

    Effective immediately, the Department of Environmental Protection will comport with section 790.25(3)(h), Florida Statutes. This will allow persons visiting the state parks to lawfully display firearms while they are engaged in fishing, or camping or going to or returning from a fishing, camping, or lawful hunting expedition. Park visitors are reminded to properly store firearms while not engaged in the above activities.”
    Sincerely,
    Douglas Darling
    Chief of Staff
    ================================================== ===
    First, I wish to thank fridaddy for his help and generous donation of time and effort. Also I would like to acknowledge the efforts of Marion Hammer on my behalf with the DEP. Truly, without their assistance this issue would still be in limbo somewhere.

    Secondly I wish to inform you that I am actively working on a website for a new group to bring the Open Carry movement more actively into the political landscape here in Florida. While I have very limited time available to me, I am making good progress on this site. A new petition for the restoration of the right to Open Carry in Florida will be a central part of that website and organization. I should be able to debut that website in a week or two.

    I consider this letter as a first victory (skirmish actually lol) in a larger ongoing issue. However by getting the DEP to acknowledge and adhere to current state law, this now gives us a statewide venue for future gatherings. I will be planning an OC event in the very near future and I sincerely hope those of you that can attend, will attend.



    On another note, it is a testimony to the lack of leadership here in Florida that this particular issue could have gone so long unnoticed and not acted upon before this. I am looking to change that. If someone with my limited time can work to get an issue like this resolved, think of what many of us together could accomplish. Even if all you have available is a few hours a month to donate to this cause, I hope you will consider joining me in this push for Florida Open Carry rights.

    I can be contacted privately by sending a PM on this board if you wish.

    More details will follow.

    Thank you for taking the time to read this far.

    Gulf Coast Gunman

    Edit: further acknowledgement

  2. #2
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    Thanks for your work on this. BTW, who does this Douglas Darling work for? His letter seems to indicate that it is not the DEP?

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    brboyer wrote:
    Thanks for your work on this. BTW, who does this Douglas Darling work for? His letter seems to indicate that it is not the DEP?
    If you follow this link:

    http://www.dep.state.fl.us/secretary...rg/default.htm

    You will see that Douglas Darling is the Chief of Staff for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, reporting directly to the secretary. I did not copy the full header of the email with all the addresses in it nor the very bottom of the email which definitely shows it all came directly from Mr Darling.

    I am going to give it time to promulgate throughout the department and get the website I mentioned up and running. After that, probably in about 2 weeks I will begin planning an OC event as part of a kickoff for the OC group.

    Glad to do it brboyer.

    Gulf Coast Gunman

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    Gulf Coast Gunman wrote:
    brboyer wrote:
    Thanks for your work on this. BTW, who does this Douglas Darling work for? His letter seems to indicate that it is not the DEP?
    If you follow this link:

    http://www.dep.state.fl.us/secretary...rg/default.htm

    You will see that Douglas Darling is the Chief of Staff for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, reporting directly to the secretary. I did not copy the full header of the email with all the addresses in it nor the very bottom of the email which definitely shows it all came directly from Mr Darling.

    I am going to give it time to promulgate throughout the department and get the website I mentioned up and running. After that, probably in about 2 weeks I will begin planning an OC event as part of a kickoff for the OC group.

    Glad to do it brboyer.

    Gulf Coast Gunman
    Thanks again. It just seemed odd the way he phrased it.

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    So how close are any parks to the launch site? I do want to see one
    before they mothball the shuttle. I see lots of campers in the shots
    of launches on tv.
    Would be a major victory to OC around LOX. OMG think of the astronauts.

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    gret work!

    Now, how about organizing an open carry fish-in ?

    get it? Fish-in

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    Good job guys!

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    Gunman,

    this is definitely fantastic news. I have been in contact with a handful of division heads today and not one knew what the heck I was talking about when I referenced the information in the letter you posted. About 20 minutes ago, apparently the email tricked down to my contact and he gave me a call with the great news. Hopefully the promulgation is comeplete by next week.

    Great work! We're that much closer.



    Tucky

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    The Statute says lawful exclusively in regards to hunting expeditions. I assume that means hunting in season with a permit, where permitted etc. Regarding camping or fishing, nothing in the statute says anything about it being lawful or not. I guess fishing could have similar rules to hunting, but how about camping? And again, the statute doesn't require, fishing and camping to be lawful; and they could just have easily added the word lawful as they did regarding hunting? So, if I am engaged in, what could be or what would appear to be, in everyday vernacular, fishing or camping, lawful or not, can I open carry? And how is "going" and "returning" defined in a legal terms?

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    I have sent the story about the issues that we have had in regards to being allowed to exercise our right to openly carry in state parks to the NRA. I hope they may post something on their website about the issue.

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    Just got home from work and am going to try to answer all I can here as quickly as I can.

    SlackwareRobert - I have no idea right now as to if there are any state parks within viewing distance to the shuttle launches. LOL. Perhaps NASA will start arming the astronauts so they can stay protected huh? LOL

    Mike - absolutely.. definitely fish-in LOL. Actually this now gives us a statewide venue to organize events.. I am thinking for the first OC event a fishing afternoon on the Sunshine Skyway Pier? Close to major metropolitan areas of Tampa and Sarasota and a state park to boot! LOL As soon as I have the website running and the petition up, am going to work to organize a first OC event. Stay tuned.

    Starbuck.. thanks for the words man. Hope you can join us at an OC fishing trip sometime.

    Tucky - I would definitely give this time to trickle down to the foot soldiers.. I imagine most management has gotten word at this point but there are most likely a lot of people in the State Parks that havent gotten the word yet. Give it a little time. :celebrate

    lmnop - I guess my thought is why would you wish to engage in unlawful fishing or camping? IANAL.. and I think the questions you are raising are best answered by someone with specific legal expertise.

    Glock - 23 - 4 - Me - They very well may. Marion Hammer is a past president of the NRA and has been very big in the RKBA and sportsmens legislation here in Florida. Good idea.

    OK guys.. it is late and I just polished off my burger and beer.. Later..


    Gulf Coast Gunman

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    The OC fishing trip at the Sunshine Skyway bridge would be pretty much a good plan all the way around. It's relatively easy to get to, wide open and the scenery isn't bad either!!

    I'll be attending for sure.

    AD
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    Gulf Coast Gunman wrote:
    Just got home from work and am going to try to answer all I can here as quickly as I can.

    SlackwareRobert - I have no idea right now as to if there are any state parks within viewing distance to the shuttle launches. LOL. Perhaps NASA will start arming the astronauts so they can stay protected huh? LOL

    Mike - absolutely.. definitely fish-in LOL. Actually this now gives us a statewide venue to organize events.. I
    the fishin' carry exemption works to/from the fishin' hole, right??

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    I just wanted to let everyone know that after the OP response to OC in state parks, I wrote the DEP and wanted to get something in writing to have in case I was confronted by any State Park police when OC. I received the following email response.

    Dear Mr. xxxxxxxx,



    Thank you for your interest in Florida State Parks. As you know the change to our procedure has occurred rather quickly and we are in the process of getting something in writing from the Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Law Enforcement’s Bureau of Park Police. I am sorry it is taking longer than anticipated, unfortunately when we get multiple offices involved the process isn’t as quick. We forwarded your inquiry to them and they will be the office that responds to you. It may take a few days but I wanted you to know we are working on your request and you will be responded to.



    If you have any further questions on this please give me a call.



    Sincerely,

    Leylani Velez

    Information Specialist

    850-245-2157

    www.floridastateparks.org

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    Glock23-4-Me wrote:
    I just wanted to let everyone know that after the OP response to OC in state parks, I wrote the DEP and wanted to get something in writing to have in case I was confronted by any State Park police when OC. I received the following email response.
    Hey Guys,



    I imagine everyone wants something in writing. I would be patient and give this all some time to work its way through the system.

    But the fact that they are aware of it is a lot better now than it was before this all started.. LOL



    GCG

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    I'm really looking forward to seeing how a lot of this works out, especially the "to and from" part. I'm sure it won't fly to be in a store somewhere with a gun on your hip, buying a soda, while "going to" the place where you will be fishing/camping, which happens to be another hundred miles down the road. Still, this could get very interesting before it's all said and done.

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    please pm me when you plan the trip.

    I would recommend calling the local Command for both DEP and FWC as well as FHP, HCSO, Pinellas County S.O as well as the MCSO. Before the event so that

    (a)they are aware that we will be there.

    (b) They can get the word out to the boots on the ground.

    (c) when we show up 10-20 people with guns one lone DEP Officers is not going to come alone. Also DEP is a very small agency. You are more likely to have contact with either HCSO, FWC,PCSO or MCSO I would talk to the shift commander and ask them to bring the law to the attention of there officers in read off. Also you could ask them for an email and forward theresponse you have gotten from the DEP. Looking forward to the event.

    As far as the go to and from that is test case time. Prove you are going to and from! That is the problem

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    mbpe912 wrote:
    please pm me when you plan the trip.

    I would recommend calling the local Command for both DEP and FWC as well as FHP, HCSO, Pinellas County S.O as well as the MCSO. Before the event so that

    (a)they are aware that we will be there.

    (b) They can get the word out to the boots on the ground.

    (c) when we show up 10-20 people with guns one lone DEP Officers is not going to come alone. Also DEP is a very small agency. You are more likely to have contact with either HCSO, FWC,PCSO or MCSO I would talk to the shift commander and ask them to bring the law to the attention of there officers in read off. Also you could ask them for an email and forward theresponse you have gotten from the DEP. Looking forward to the event.

    As far as the go to and from that is test case time. Prove you are going to and from! That is the problem
    Yes I fully plan on doing just that. Pre-notifying all LEO and possible LEO as well as making sure the local DEP officials have gotten word. Good advise. Thanks.

    As for the traveling to and from portion of the law, I personally feel that is pushing the letter of the law. I think we have to look at the intent of the law and go from there. Stopping by the local Wal Mart OCing in Florida is not a good idea. Telling them you on "on your way to a lawful fishing expedition" is pushing it. I personally do not recommend anyone attempt this unless you have deep pockets and can bear the legal expense to prove you are technically correct.

    Florida law currently allows us to legally have a loaded firearm in our vehicle without a license as long as it is properly encased. I take this to mean inside a glove compartment. Not where I want the law to be but where it is right now. A good start.

    We need to PARTNER with legislators and get the law where we want it. To that end I have started another website. Please see this thread:
    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum17/33304.html

    Lets get OC moving forward in Florida.
    Gulf Coast Gunman

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    I believe that it will be the state's burden to show that you are not fishing or traveling to or from beyond a reasonable doubt. I do not think that the open carry statute is written as an affirmative defense. Only time and further case law will tell.

    THIS POST IS FOR DICUSSION PURPOSES ONLY NO ATTORNEY CLIENT RELATIONSHIP IS INTENDED OR IMPLIED.

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    You wrote: On another note, it is a testimony to the lack of leadership here in Florida that this particular issue could have gone so long unnoticed



    I disagree!



    I have been hitting everyone I could about this issue, including writing EVERY state legislator a few days ago. But that is not why I disagree with you.



    It is NOT the responsibility of the "leadership," in florida to address these issues, but the gun owners in florida. It is our responsibility to call them out when they make illegal demands, or illegal restrictions. We are the ones that control our government, they are not the ones that control us.

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    GIdeon_70 wrote:
    You wrote: On another note, it is a testimony to the lack of leadership here in Florida that this particular issue could have gone so long unnoticed



    I disagree!



    I have been hitting everyone I could about this issue, including writing EVERY state legislator a few days ago. But that is not why I disagree with you.



    It is NOT the responsibility of the "leadership," in florida to address these issues, but the gun owners in florida. It is our responsibility to call them out when they make illegal demands, or illegal restrictions. We are the ones that control our government, they are not the ones that control us.
    Dear Gideon,

    I believe possibly that you somewhat misunderstood what I intended. Perhaps I did not say it clearly enough.

    What I meant was, it is a testimony to the lack of leadership of gun owners, sportsmen, and concerned citizens that this issue has gone so long unanswered and unnoticed.

    In no way, am I trying to minimize your personal efforts. I applaud them.

    However, in this specific matter, the legislature had already done its job. In 2006, they passed a measure specifically directing the DEP to come into line with all Florida firearms regulations. This meant also coming into line with 790.25(3)(h), which they had not done.

    This matter was a state department operating outside their guidelines by imposing a regulation on the visitors to state parks that did not comply with current state law. The "worker bees" within the Department were doing what any good employee would do. They were following what they believed to be the direction of their management.

    Their management thought this issue had been addressed and resolved years ago and was no longer an issue. Obviously a major disconnect.

    Now the question becomes "Why did this issue sit for 3 years before being addressed by any of the groups previously mentioned? (i.e. concerned citizens, gun owners, sportsmen)?

    Lack of interest? Lack of awareness? No time to deal with it? "Cant fight city hall" type of mentality? I have no idea. Quite possibly a combination of all those factors. But all of these boil down to leadership. No one to this time has rallied these groups into a single focused organization.

    To this end I have started http://www.floridaopencarry.org .
    I see this as a citizen driven activist organization. I am working on this site and you will soon see activities which I am planning. Things like setting up informational booths at gun shows, planning OC events around the state etc in addtion to identifying those laws that currently restrict our 2A rights, and I feel OC is right at the top of that list, and working with the legislature to get those laws changed.

    Lets find a way for us to work together and bring OC to Florida.

    Gulf Coast Gunman

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    Gulf Coast Gunman wrote:
    GIdeon_70 wrote:
    You wrote: On another note, it is a testimony to the lack of leadership here in Florida that this particular issue could have gone so long unnoticed



    I disagree!



    I have been hitting everyone I could about this issue, including writing EVERY state legislator a few days ago. But that is not why I disagree with you.



    It is NOT the responsibility of the "leadership," in florida to address these issues, but the gun owners in florida. It is our responsibility to call them out when they make illegal demands, or illegal restrictions. We are the ones that control our government, they are not the ones that control us.
    Dear Gideon,

    I believe possibly that you somewhat misunderstood what I intended. Perhaps I did not say it clearly enough.

    What I meant was, it is a testimony to the lack of leadership of gun owners, sportsmen, and concerned citizens that this issue has gone so long unanswered and unnoticed.

    In no way, am I trying to minimize your personal efforts. I applaud them.

    However, in this specific matter, the legislature had already done its job. In 2006, they passed a measure specifically directing the DEP to come into line with all Florida firearms regulations. This meant also coming into line with 790.25(3)(h), which they had not done.

    This matter was a state department operating outside their guidelines by imposing a regulation on the visitors to state parks that did not comply with current state law. The "worker bees" within the Department were doing what any good employee would do. They were following what they believed to be the direction of their management.

    Their management thought this issue had been addressed and resolved years ago and was no longer an issue. Obviously a major disconnect.

    Now the question becomes "Why did this issue sit for 3 years before being addressed by any of the groups previously mentioned? (i.e. concerned citizens, gun owners, sportsmen)?

    Lack of interest? Lack of awareness? No time to deal with it? "Cant fight city hall" type of mentality? I have no idea. Quite possibly a combination of all those factors. But all of these boil down to leadership. No one to this time has rallied these groups into a single focused organization.

    To this end I have started http://www.floridaopencarry.org .
    I see this as a citizen driven activist organization. I am working on this site and you will soon see activities which I am planning. Things like setting up informational booths at gun shows, planning OC events around the state etc in addtion to identifying those laws that currently restrict our 2A rights, and I feel OC is right at the top of that list, and working with the legislature to get those laws changed.

    Lets find a way for us to work together and bring OC to Florida.

    Gulf Coast Gunman
    I have a private forum at www.daytonagunowners.comif you would like to use it to host the exclusive topic of open carry organizing. Let me know and I'll start the topic and get things underway.

    I am also looking for folks to write articles about guns on the site, if you are interested or know anyone that is.

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