Friday, February 08, 2008

Democracy in action, by gimleteye

An eagle-eyed reader picked this up, from the agenda of the Miami-Dade County Commission: "Ordinance relating to county boards, amending Section 2-11.88 to provide that any person who has a pending lawsuit against the county shall not be eligible to serve on a county board unless this requirement is waived by two-thirds vote of the members of the board of county commissioners, providing severability, inclusion in the code and an effective date."

It sort of leaves you, flabbergasted. Although Commissioners Diaz and Sosa sponsored this ordinance, it does make you feel like Natacha Seijas' paw prints are on it. What's the intent of this new ordinance? Who is it aimed at?

As if the drawbridges protecting those inside elected office aren't high enough, already. Comments, readers?


Anonymous said...

It's aimed at the Soil and Water Conservation District, for one. Problem is, does the ordinance extend to organizations that are suing the county? Can they have representation on county boards.

Anonymous said...

What's happening in Florida? Hialeah?

NY Times
December 25, 2007

Court Ruling on Protests Curbs Malls in California

SAN FRANCISCO — The California Supreme Court ruled Monday that privately owned shopping malls cannot stop protesters from demonstrating there to urge a boycott of one of the tenants.

In a 4-to-3 decision, the court said a San Diego mall violated California law protecting free speech when its owners barred protesters from distributing leaflets in front of one of the mall’s stores, asking shoppers not to give the store their business.

“A shopping mall is a public forum in which persons may reasonably exercise their right to free speech,” Justice Carlos R. Moreno wrote in the majority opinion.

Justice Moreno said shopping malls were entitled to enact and enforce “reasonable regulations of the time, place and manner of such free expression,” to avoid a disruption of business.

“But they may not prohibit certain types of speech based upon its content,” he wrote, like speech urging a boycott of stores.

The case stemmed from an October 1998 protest at the Fashion Valley Mall, an upscale shopping center in San Diego, by members of the Graphic Communications International Union, representing pressroom employees at The San Diego Union-Tribune.

With contract negotiations at a standstill, the union was trying to bring pressure on The Union-Tribune by distributing leaflets urging a boycott of Robinsons-May, a store that advertised in the paper. The mall’s owners barred the protesters from the property, saying they did not have a permit from the mall and were therefore trespassing. The union appealed to the National Labor Relations Board.

After the labor board sided with the union, according to court documents, the mall petitioned for a review by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Last year, that court referred the case back to the state to resolve.

The decision Monday upheld a 1979 ruling by the State Supreme Court that found shopping malls to be public forums where free-speech rights were protected by California law. Writing for the dissenters Monday, Justice Ming W. Chin called the earlier decision “ill conceived.” Justice Chin noted that in most states, there were no free-speech rights on private property.

Anonymous said...

Forward the NY Times article to Publix that has barred, in fact placed restraining orders, against people gathering signatures on a petition even in their parking lot. (Thanks to Natasha Seijas' whinning when volunteers collected signatures for her recall at the Miami Lakes Publix).

Anonymous said...

Doesn't this ordinance appear directed to Mr. Braman?

Anonymous said...

The ordinance goes on to say that a person cannot sue the county while they are serving on a county board either.
Even when an organization sues it usually has named parties; oops, their dead meat.
This is a sad attempt, no matter who it is aimed at, to further inhibit free speach in Miami-Dade.
So if you serve on a county board or want to serve you give up your right to sue. What happens if a board member is discriminated against during their board duties? So sorry, suck it up. What if a board member is involved in sueing the county for denying due process, like not counting recall petitions or denying a vote on incorporation?
Let's face it, for the most part, board members are the people most engaged in government. They are volunteers and care enough about county business to donate their time. Does this apply to appointed members of Community Councils? Wow, I could go on and on with the "what ifs" but the bottom line is, if you don't behave you will be removed from "office".
Bet it doesn't apply to lobbyists or big boys who rountinely sue for some reason or other. Maybe this is directed at the former Mayor Dermer who sued to reverse rediculous ordinances eliminating citizen's petitions. He better not try to sit on a county board!
Bottom line, this is unconstitutional!!! Where is the ACLU?

Anonymous said...

Its called the Redlands activism prevention act.

Anonymous said...

Braman, yes now it makes sense.

Anonymous said...

ACLU...what ever are they doing?

out of sight said...

I guess I better not have a slip and fall on the escalator going to the third floor there. This would mean that I can't sue to get them pay for my mangled head and then use my mangled head to make decisions to defend the tax payers interests on a committee at the same time.

Yes, I think it was directed at NB or his friends. Or directed at someone they needed to silence, at the very least. However, I don’t see those kind of actions intimidating NB. People like him don’t need committees. A committee would slow him down.

I think we are getting to the point that every time a commissioner gets a paranoid thought, they legislate against liberty and personal rights to sooth their anxiety.