Thursday, January 24, 2013
Action Alert: Anti-Occupy/Homeless bill to be heard tomorrow (Friday)
by Larry Geller
I just learned about this bill, and it is to be heard tomorrow. Please check it out. I’ll explain.
The bill is HB72 and the hearing is at 8:30 tomorrow—hearing notice is here.
The bill “Exempts counties and their employees from liability for removing personal property from public property” and seems to be a reaction to the case filed in federal court to protect the rights of Occupiers and those homeless individuals and families who have been pushed to the edge of the sidewalks by an uncaring Honolulu city administration.
See: (de)Occupy asks federal court to enforce agreement and to impose sanctions for city conduct during Thursday raid (12/21/2012).
The various videos taken of City raids show a disregard for the personal property that is seized. The lawsuit in progress calls for a preliminary injunction against the City. Of course, we don’t know how the case will be decided when it is heard in March, but this state law would appear to license counties and their employees to misbehave as they wish.
Since there are protections against unlawful seizure under the US Constitution, I doubt that this law would have effect in federal court anyway, but what do I know.
If you have an opinion, testimony is easy to submit from the links above via the State Capitol website.
I'm trying to avoid saying that the Nazis could have used this kind of bill before the Nuremberg trials, but I can't help myself. This bill goes beyond that by saying that the perpetrators need not have even even been "following orders," but just that there is a a mere ordinance that "Prohibits persons from storing personal property on public property..."
Since there currently is such an ordinance, all County employees including the police, Parks & Recs workers, the guys fixing the potholes in the road are exempt from liability for taking your stuff, whatever it is. If they're not just "following orders" then no one is responsible and you're just out of luck. Or as this video shows, out of a place to sleep tonight:
Trish Morikawa steals a tent:
Well, maybe the City will offer a few bucks for the taking of the possessions. It seems to be a viable approach for HART getting folks moved out of the way for rail.
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