Pasco, WA Ignoring State Preemption

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This morning, I visited the park next to GESA Stadium in Pasco, WA and I found 2 of these signs. Since this is a City park (public property) forbidding firearms is in violation of Washington RCW 9.41.290 State Preemption.

This is a city violating WA State Law and no matter where you live in Washington, this should concern you. To write council members, find their email addresses here:
<broken link removed>

For referencing WA State Preemption go to:
http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.290


10532553_488553261278912_2549065833681640514_n.jpg
 
OP
twoclones
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I have been in contact with the Mayor of Pasco. His reply to my initial email was:

Butch,

Be advised Pasco repealed its local ordinance several years ago and discussion by council, if I remember correctly, included the recognition that signage would be updated as they wear out and/or staff would look at reasonable cost augmentation if possible. It's simply a matter of cost--not that the city isn't compliant. You, myself, and others can carry in parks. In fact, I believe the vote to repeal was unanimous as well. You may want to review the archive of council meetings at the city website.

Matt Watkins
Lifetime Supporter of the 2nd, All Other Amendments, and the Constitution

~~~~~

I responded with:

Mayor Watkins,

Thanks for your reply.
HOWEVER, your police department has been contacted by multiple activists this week and representatives of the Pasco, WA police department insist that the sign is correct and the police will enforce it. One representative even cited RCW 9.41.300 as justification for banning guns in Pasco Parks!

I am dyslexic, not stupid. RCW 9.41.300 explicitly forbids such action :(

We want the signs removed from every park in Pasco and the police retrained. Leaving the signs creates a false image for the citizenry allowing them to wrongly believe the City of Pasco is legally allowed to violate their civil rights. It also creates an unsafe condition for everyone choosing to exercise their right to bear arms while in the parks.

Personally, I do not think the city should be allowed to spend any money on anything until these illegal signs are removed. If it's truly such a financial hardship, I volunteer the services of myself, and other members of our Tri-Cities gun free zones watch group, to gently remove and dispose of all of these illegal signs for the City of Pasco. The city can replace them with non-offending signs as funds become available.

I think by working together (with a list of parks and notifying the police in advance), we can remedy this offensive problem before the Independence Day celebrations.

Butch Elrod
 

mkwerx

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Love your reply, smother them with kindness and logic. It's good though that the mayor admits the signage is wrong. He should call his Chief of Police to remind them of such.
 
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We have the same problem at the Walla Walla Fair Grounds. It is public property, but the county has no firearms signs posted. Last year I called the Sheriff's office and asked about CCW with permits and was told no.
 
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It is interesting to me that our rights are being attached from the top down AND . . . the bottom up!!

The question: Does The Constitution have ANY FREINDS in officialdom????

Sheldon
 
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twoclones
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I am seeing that "officials" don't really care so much about their signs being illegal and are using the cost of replacing signs as an excuse. In response to that, I've begun focusing on the danger created by park visitors and law enforcement "thinking" an open carrier is committing a crime.

I figure a politician can nobly claim to be saving the people's money but cannot ignore creating a dangerous situation by their own inaction.
 
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I'm sure the mayor and the rest of the city council would much rather leave the signs up to curb the hassle from the PMS'ing Moms against liberty and freedom, and the rest of the anti-gun nut jobs. I like how he played it save in his canned response by playing the fiscal responsibility card. Sounds like he's been neutered by politics...(probably sits down when he pees too)
 
OP
twoclones
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My post on the Facebook page KPR Tri-Cities Anti No Gun Zones...

SAFETY EVENTUALLY?
In this struggle to get the illegal "Firearms Free" signs removed from City of Pasco, WA parks, I am seeing that the Mayor (possibly other council members) is playing the fiscal responsibility card.

In response, I would ask that any and every one of you who contacts the Mayor, council members, police, or news media would identify the signs as a potential danger to law abiding citizens.

How is it dangerous? We have seen in the past 2 days that employees of the Pasco police department BELIEVE the sign makes it illegal to carry in the park. The average citizen entering the park BELIEVES the sign is valid and makes a criminal of anyone carrying in the park.

I imagine multiple scenarios of open carriers (and concealed carriers who've been outed) being harassed by well meaning park goers. Law Enforcement being called and arriving ready for a gun fight. I see someone getting killed and bystanders being wounded.

Replacing the signs in due course is not an option when the safety of the community is at risk.
 
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The cost of replacing the signs will be much less than the cost of a false arrest lawsuit. Pasco doesn't have a leg to stand on if it arrests someone carrying in the parks.

Send a certified letter outlining the facts to the Pasco City Attorney with a cc: to the Second Amendment Foundation. That will document that they have been put on notice of their unlawful policy, and anyone arrested by the Pasco police will have a "smoking gun" to prove willful violation of Constitutional Rights. I'm sure SAF would love to join in the lawsuit.

It the City attorney is halfway competent, he will set the police straight about the law.
 

The Heretic

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The cost of replacing the signs will be much less than the cost of a false arrest lawsuit. Pasco doesn't have a leg to stand on if it arrests someone carrying in the parks.

Send a certified letter outlining the facts to the Pasco City Attorney with a cc: to the Second Amendment Foundation. That will document that they have been put on notice of their unlawful policy, and anyone arrested by the Pasco police will have a "smoking gun" to prove willful violation of Constitutional Rights. I'm sure SAF would love to join in the lawsuit.

It the City attorney is halfway competent, he will set the police straight about the law.
Constructive advice.

I would have a law office write the letter, lawyers pay attention when lawyers write them letters.
 
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< Why they don't have school shootings in Israel.
Notice the long gun slung over the teachers shoulder?

We had that same problem in Vancouver, they finally did get around to changing the signs here, but it took some letter writing and a change in the ordinance.

Deen
NRA Life Member, Benefactor Level
"Defender of Freedom" award
NRA Golden Eagle member

"Having a gun is like a parachute, if you need one and don't have it you may never need it again"
 
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twoclones
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Naturally, when politicians respond favorably to your concerns, it's a good idea to reward them. This is my message to the Mayor and all Council Members.

City of Pasco, WA
Mayor and all City Council Members,

Thank you for your quick action in dealing with this unfortunate "gun free zone" sign posted at city parks! I greatly appreciate the near immediate email/phone responses by Matt Watkins and Al Yenney. Other cities in Washington State having this "problem" should model their actions after the City of Pasco, WA.

Whether the other Rights Advocates contact you to express their appreciation or not, our online discussions about your quick action have been very much in your favor :)
 

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