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Thread: Vancouver Parks Code 15.04

  1. #1
    Campaign Veteran gogodawgs's Avatar
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    Vancouver Parks Code 15.04

    Well...a friend of mine from Vancouver pointed out that a sign at Esther Short Park and the Vancouver Municipal Code both state that mere possession of firearms at parks are illegal.

    So it looks like the Vancouver crowd (Mech, bwbowley, SargentMac, USMC1911, joejoejoe, tompkins, nathan, SirCastic, JOESEEB) needs to write some letters and speak in front of the city council.



    Section 15.04.060 Firearms and fireworks.

    Firearms, fireworks, bows, arrows, and sling shots are prohibited in any park. It is unlawful to shoot, fire, or explode any firearms, fireworks, firecracker, torpedo or explosive of any kind or to carry any firearms or to shoot or fire any air gun, bows, and arrows, BB gun or use any slingshot in any park; provided, the director of parks may issue permits for use of safe and sane fireworks in specified areas where fire hazards will not be increased and where the use of the fireworks will be under proper supervision, and fireworks displays may be permitted upon securing of a proper permit pursuant to state law; provided further, this section shall not prevent establishment in any park of a properly designed archery course. (Ord. M-1072 7, 1969)
    Live Free or Die!

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    Opt-Out Members BigDave's Avatar
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    OCDO Members should take a move and start cleaning up City and County Ordinances, many have and are currently involved in doing this, how about the rest to become involved?
    Last edited by BigDave; 08-02-2010 at 10:54 PM.

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    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    On it like a bonnet! I just sent an email to our mayor, Tim Leavitt. Gonna do some more research to see what else I can do.

    Joe~

    p.s. I just got back tonight from working out at the Anytime Fitness right across from that park. I curiously looked at the sign, and I did see that it said no firearms. Funny the topic has been brought up here.

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    Regular Member Mech's Avatar
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    I know this might sound incredibly lazy, but if someone can find the RCW/specific law saying that we can indeed carry onto park spaces, I'll gladly email whoever I need to. Sorry just kind of short on time right now; the family is leaving for a 20-day trip to Taiwan tomorrow so things are hectic as it is.

    But yeah, if yall can give me the info I'll be sure to send out a few emails while I'm in Taiwan

    Well, I'll say my goodbye to yall for now. Will be back from Taiwan on the 23rd of August. Yall take care while I'm gone, ya hear?

    (PS. Not being able to OC anything in Taiwan is going to drive me CRAZY! XD)

    PPS. Sorry for hijacking this thread

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mech View Post
    I know this might sound incredibly lazy, but if someone can find the RCW/specific law saying that we can indeed carry onto park spaces, I'll gladly email whoever I need to. Sorry just kind of short on time right now; the family is leaving for a 20-day trip to Taiwan tomorrow so things are hectic as it is.

    But yeah, if yall can give me the info I'll be sure to send out a few emails while I'm in Taiwan

    Well, I'll say my goodbye to yall for now. Will be back from Taiwan on the 23rd of August. Yall take care while I'm gone, ya hear?

    (PS. Not being able to OC anything in Taiwan is going to drive me CRAZY! XD)

    PPS. Sorry for hijacking this thread
    9.41.290

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    Regular Member USMC1911's Avatar
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    I will also get right on this, I am not much of a public speaker, however I can write emails and make phone calls !
    Semper Fi
    I am a Sheep Dog, ... Wolves Beware !

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    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    Reply from Tim Leavitt

    "Hello Joe --
    Thanks for emailing me about this.
    The difference between State and the City's local codes was brought to my attention earlier this year.
    Staff are in the process of revising City code and determining how to best change the park signage.
    They will be getting back to me with an updated schedule.
    I'll keep you posted.
    thanks
    tim"

    I will be keeping an eye to when the next city hall meeting is so I can attend. I will keep you posted.

    Joe~

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    Campaign Veteran gogodawgs's Avatar
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    1st and 3rd Monday of each month 7p.m. Public Testimony Welcome...

    http://www.cityofvancouver.us/govern...ubmenuid=10474

    You are usually given just 3 minutes to speak, so type something up and read it out load a couple of times and time yourself at the 2 1/2 minute range. You may have a longer typed document....and you may submit more in writing to the record.

    Also, send an invite to a specific Columbian reporter if you do.

    Quote Originally Posted by joejoejoe View Post
    Reply from Tim Leavitt

    "Hello Joe --
    Thanks for emailing me about this.
    The difference between State and the City's local codes was brought to my attention earlier this year.
    Staff are in the process of revising City code and determining how to best change the park signage.
    They will be getting back to me with an updated schedule.
    I'll keep you posted.
    thanks
    tim"

    I will be keeping an eye to when the next city hall meeting is so I can attend. I will keep you posted.

    Joe~
    Live Free or Die!

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    I was under the impression that County's and City's couln't enact strickter laws then the state...
    Quote Originally Posted by RCW 9.41.300 View Post
    (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.
    Does that mean that Vancouver is in violation of state law?

  10. #10
    Campaign Veteran gogodawgs's Avatar
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    Yes, exactly. They need to clean up their code and remove the language...

    that makes mere possesion illegal.

    Quote Originally Posted by ~FJ View Post
    I was under the impression that County's and City's couln't enact strickter laws then the state...

    Does that mean that Vancouver is in violation of state law?
    Live Free or Die!

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    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    http://www.clark.wa.gov/news/news-re...pkNewsSeq=2089

    Check it out! Thursday night they are having a meeting SPECIFICALLY on parks! I already emailed the commission. I'll see what happens and keep you all updated.

    Joe~

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    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    Should I open carry to the meeting? It's going to be held at the Battle Ground Community Center. According to the law, it is not illegal. Think I will lose my opportunity if I carry?

    Joe~

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    I didn't carry to the City Council meeting because I wanted to make the issue about following state law, not about gun rights. Carrying the gun will bring more attention to that, however if you are within your rights then I wouldn't fault you which ever way you go.

  14. #14
    Opt-Out Members BigDave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joejoejoe View Post
    http://www.clark.wa.gov/news/news-re...pkNewsSeq=2089

    Check it out! Thursday night they are having a meeting SPECIFICALLY on parks! I already emailed the commission. I'll see what happens and keep you all updated.

    Joe~
    The forum you are addressing here does not have the authority to do anything about the City Ordinances concerning firearms, it must be done through the City Council not the parks department.

  15. #15
    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    Update

    I got a hold of the committee on Vancouver Parks yesterday. A gentleman informed me that it would cost 7000-8000 dollars to replace all the old signs. He said all the new ones going up do not have the "no firearms" restrictions. He is well aware that the signs are in violation of Washington State Law, and he said that the Vancouver PD knows that it cannot be enforced. I stilled pressed the issue because it still needs to be taken care of. He said this weekend he will have the "no firearms" covered up from the Esther Short Park signs as a cheap fix, and he will continue to work on getting the remaining park signs fixed. He also said he would work with me in getting the Vancouver Parks Code 15.04.060 changed so it is in line with State law.

    When he started the conversation, he said, "I just tell everyone who asks to conceal. No one will ever know anyways. It's only an issue if you want to openly carry."

    "Funny you say that," I said, "Because I want to open carry!"

    He replied with a *sigh* "Okay then, let's see what we can do."

    All in all, he sounds like a great guy who is going to help me get the problem solved. It seems like a few people have mentioned it, but no open carriers. I will keep you updated. He said it should be fixed by next week. Also I will keep you updated on the Vancouver Parks Code.

    Joe~
    Last edited by joejoejoe; 08-10-2010 at 01:57 PM.

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    Campaign Veteran gogodawgs's Avatar
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    First, excellent follow up! Outstanding!

    I think this is a typical response from a NRA life member. However, it is a step in the right direction.

    Second, the key here is to have the code updated. Just because they say they won't enforce it does not mean that it won't be written on a ticket for the courts to figure out.

    Third, this is another prime example of open carry leading the way and changing the political landscape. We are the leading gassroots activists making the largest impact on civil rights in quite some time.
    Live Free or Die!

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    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    http://www.ci.vancouver.wa.us/parks-...ails/rules.htm

    Just noticed that changed to "discharge of firearms"

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    Kudos!

    Good work JoeJoeJoe!
    Let us know if this will be on the agenda of any city or county meetings, will see if able to show up in support.
    Gary

  19. #19
    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    I am attending the City Council Meeting on the 16th of this month at 6pm. Open public forums begin at 7pm, but I will be there earlier so I don't miss it! If you are interested in coming in support, let me know and we can carpool in my car.

    Joe~

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    Regular Member jt59's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joejoejoe View Post
    http://www.ci.vancouver.wa.us/parks-...ails/rules.htm

    Just noticed that changed to "discharge of firearms"
    Hey joejoe,

    They did the same thing on the Pierce County website....you should also take the extra step to make sure that it was changed in the county code....

    In PC, this has not been done and it still indicates "no guns" in title 14 of our local code. This must be changed by the county council...that's where I'm am going next.
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat....Teddy Roosevelt

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mech View Post
    I know this might sound incredibly lazy, but if someone can find the RCW/specific law saying that we can indeed carry onto park spaces, I'll gladly email whoever I need to. (
    It's not a case of "what law allows me to carry", it is a matter of RCW9.41.290 prohibiting cities and counties from passing any laws that regulate firearms. The law has allowed only a few areas where cities and counties can regulate firearms but prohibiting possession in parks is not one. Read http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.300 for those areas where they are allowed to regulate.

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    Regular Member jt59's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amlevin View Post
    It's not a case of "what law allows me to carry", it is a matter of RCW9.41.290 prohibiting cities and counties from passing any laws that regulate firearms. The law has allowed only a few areas where cities and counties can regulate firearms but prohibiting possession in parks is not one. Read http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.300 for those areas where they are allowed to regulate.
    And these:

    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=9.41.290

    AGO_2008_No8_Firearm_Preemption.pdf

    Here is the letter I sent to Parks in Pierce County and subsequently to one of our Council members when Mr Basket didn't respond, feel free to edit the intro and the references and code citations to Pierce County to your own needs there: (note the links to the Pierce County website have been updated)

    Dear Mr. Basket,

    I am sending you this letter regarding signage that is posted in several areas of the Chambers Creek Properties under your responsibility that I regularly use.

    My wife and I were out walking the track around the course as we often do and I read on one of the "rules" signs off of the street entrance on the north end of the park, that among other restrictions, indicate that firearms are prohibited. I certainly can understand where a "no discharge" rule would be appropriate under the citing below, but your ability to have an enforceable local code prohibiting guns is especially confusing to me, since it appears that these rules are directly in violation of RCW 9.41.290,

    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=9.41.290 .

    The state of Washington hereby fully occupies and preempts the entire field of firearms regulation within the boundaries of the state, including the registration, licensing, possession, purchase, sale, acquisition, transfer, discharge, and transportation of firearms, or any other element relating to firearms or parts thereof, including ammunition and reloader components. Cities, towns, and counties or other municipalities may enact only those laws and ordinances relating to firearms that are specifically authorized by state law, as in RCW 9.41.300, and are consistent with this chapter. Such local ordinances shall have the same penalty as provided for by state law. 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.

    ....and RCW 9.41.300. http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.300

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

    (a) Restricting the discharge (my italics) 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.

    (3)(a) Cities, towns, and counties may enact ordinances restricting the areas in their respective jurisdictions in which firearms may be sold, but, except as provided in (b) of this subsection, a business selling firearms may not be treated more restrictively than other businesses located within the same zone. An ordinance requiring the cessation of business within a zone shall not have a shorter grandfather period for businesses selling firearms than for any other businesses within the zone.

    (b) Cities, towns, and counties may restrict the location of a business selling firearms to not less than five hundred feet from primary or secondary school grounds, if the business has a storefront, has hours during which it is open for business, and posts advertisements or signs observable to passersby that firearms are available for sale. A business selling firearms that exists as of the date a restriction is enacted under this subsection (3)(b) shall be grandfathered according to existing law.

    From the Pierce County Website, as I am sure you well know, I researched and found the following information posted.


    "Fireworks and firearms are prohibited"

    http://www.piercecountywa.org/pc/abt...trailrules.htm

    http://www.piercecountywa.org/pc/ser.../fac-rules.htm



    OTHER PARK RULES & REGULATIONS
    Possession of alcoholic beverages is prohibited.
    Loitering in vehicles is prohibited.
    For safety, swim only in designated areas.
    Please use trash receptacles.
    No firearms, fireworks, or open fires.
    Loud music is prohibited.
    Drive carefully and cautiously and enjoy your visit.

    No person shall camp in any park except in areas specifically designated and/or marked for that purpose.

    In a larger perspective, this policy issue needs to be addressed at the Council level for all of the parks and trails around Pierce County and in support of this request is additional clarifications made by the Washington State AG.

    AGO_2008_No8_Firearm_Preemption.pdf
    Last edited by jt59; 08-11-2010 at 11:53 AM.
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat....Teddy Roosevelt

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    Regular Member jt59's Avatar
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    Not really changed?

    Hmmmm,

    Just as I suspected, this same thing happend to me with Pierce County Parks: They changed the references to "park rules" on the website regarding "no guns", but the actual code language is still in place:

    http://www.cityofvancouver.us/Munici...4&VMC=060.html

    This has to be done by the governing Council....

    Don't give up.....
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat....Teddy Roosevelt

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    Regular Member joejoejoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jt59 View Post
    Hey joejoe,

    They did the same thing on the Pierce County website....you should also take the extra step to make sure that it was changed in the county code....
    Well the city council meeting is on a Monday. The Tuesday following it is the County meeting, which I will also be attending.

    Joe~

  25. #25
    Campaign Veteran gogodawgs's Avatar
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    Follow up!

    Congrats to you Vancouver guys!

    I had a buddy take a pic of the sign at Esther Short today!

    Live Free or Die!

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