Tag Archives: law enforcement

Videos: farewell Jason Davenport, approval limits, CALEA, personal care home @ LCC 2018-09-11

The county held a ceremony for departing Lowndes County Planner Jason Davenport. I asked the person sitting in his former seat, Engineering/Planning Technician Molly Stevenson, if she was confirmed yet. She would only say it was confirmed that she was sitting there right then.

They also had a 911 CALEA Re-Accreditation Presentation and the Chairman recognized Leadership Lowndes.

Citizens Bob Harlan and Fred E. Blanton Jr complained about road conditions. I thanked Utilities Director Steve Stalvey for sending information about recent Lowndes County sewage spills (two in July), and I thanked him advance for sending the NPDES-permit-required followup testing (not yet received).

On the REZ-2018-16 Stovall rezoning, the applicant revealed the reason for the previous restriction when Continue reading

Videos: Naylor Boat Ramp, approval limits, CALEA, personal care home @ LCC 2018-09-10

News about the Naylor Boat Ramp in an Engineering Projects Report! Chad McLeod also reported about the 911 center, the North Lowndes Soccer Complex, the fire warehouse classroom, the animal shelter, and the courthouse renovation project, all still to be completed from SPLOST VII funds, which run out next year. Even with that three-and-a-half-minute special engineering report, the whole meeting took ten minutes Monday morning.

Also not on the agenda, HR has a new employee. Also there will be a new traffic signal.

Should the County Manager and the Finance Director be able to approve Continue reading

CALEA, personal care home, and county manager approval limit @ LCC 2018-09-10

Should the County Manager and the Finance Director be able to approve 2.5 times as much in dollar value on budgeted items as they currently can?

Also a rezoning to reconfigure for two parcels and another to permit personal care homes, plus a 911 CALEA Re-Accreditation Presentation are on the agenda for 8:30 AM this morning at the Work Session and tomorrow evening’s voting Regular Session.

2015-03-09 rezoning for Stovall property

The rezoning REZ-2018-16 Stovall, 6002 N. Oak St. Ext. to permit personal care homes is “as a result of a potential buyer’s interest in developing the property into an assisted living facility”. This same Tuesday, the same property is on ZBOA’s agenda for a variance on the buffer condition.

The 2015-03-10 agenda for the earlier rezoning from R-21 to C-G, Well & Other did not say anything specifically about private care facilities, nor did the Continue reading

Citizens can video on duty police —Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has declined to review a Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals decision that struck down an Illinois law prohibiting audio recordings without permission, echoing last year’s First Court decision that you can record police on the job. Let’s remember it’s not just police:

“Gathering information about government officials in a form that can readily be disseminated to others serves a cardinal First Amendment interest in protecting and promoting

‘the free discussion of governmental affairs.’

That means all elected or appointed or employed government officials, from County Commissioners and City Councils down through sheriff and police departments to the Animal Shelter. Police are employees, not elected or appointed, so these rulings would appear to apply to other governmental employees.

Radley Balko wrote for Huffpo 27 November 2012, Supreme Court Inaction Boosts Right To Record Police Officers,

The Illinois and Massachusetts laws have been used to arrest people who attempt to record on-duty police officers and other public officials. In one of the more notorious cases, Chicago resident Tiawanda Moore was arrested in 2010 when she attempted to use her cell phone to record officers in a Chicago police station.

Continue reading

Pop the drug war balloon: legalize and regulate the drug trade —Terry Nelson, LEAP

LTE in the WSJ, 21 January 2012:
The article illustrates what I learned over my 30-year career as a federal agent: Cracking down in one place doesn’t make drugs disappear, it only moves the trade elsewhere. This so-called “balloon effect,” combined with the insatiable demand for drugs across the globe, means that no level of law-enforcement skill or dedication can make a significant dent.

The only way to pop the proverbial balloon is to legalize and regulate the drug trade, which would eliminate the opportunity to make enormous black-market profits. It wasn’t easy for me to come to this revelation after dedicating so many years to enforcing drug laws, but it is common sense. Law-enforcement officers don’t have to chase gangsters selling booze from town to town because we ended the failed experiment of alcohol prohibition decades ago. It is time we do the same for other drugs.

Terry Nelson
Executive Board Member
Law Enforcement Against Prohibition
Granbury, Texas

And that will pop the incarceration bubble, as well, according to CCA’s own 2010 report to the SEC. -jsq

Boston catches up with Atlanta: you can video police

Poilce are public employees, and the public has a right to video them doing their duty; so says a federal appeals court.

Pace Lattin wrote for Technorati, Federal Courts Rule it is Not Illegal to Film Police John S. Quarterman

The First Court of Appeals has reached a decision that would allow the general public to video-tape police officers while they are working. This decision comes right after several well-known public cases have come to light involving citizens being arrested for video-taping police.

This specific case in question was Simon Glik vs.The City of Boston (and several police officers), in which a teenage Simon Gilk was arrested after videotaping Boston Police abusing a homeless man. While Mr. Gilk was not interfering with the police, he was arrested on wiretapping charges.

The ACLU had sued on his behalf, even when the charges were dropped, noting that there was a growing epidemic of citizens in the United States being arrested by police for videotaping, even when documenting police brutality and abuse.

The First Court Agreed with the ACLU that this should be legal, and wrote that: “The filming of government officials engaged in their duties in a public place, including police officers performing their responsibilities, fits comfortably within these principles [of protected First Amendment activity].

The Atlanta Police Department already avoided this problem by settling a previous case and making a policy that citizens can video police. This appeals court ruling now says anybody can, nationwide, because of the First Amendment.

Why has this become an issue lately? Continue reading

Let the Humane Society train animal control officers —John Gates @ LCC 26 July 2011

John Gates, director at the Humane Society of Lowndes County, noted that county law enforcement doesn’t seem to know much about animal laws and regulations, in addition to the problems at the shelter.

This part caused Joe Pritchard’s head to jerk back:

I think our animals in the community deserves the same rights as my children, myself, or your animals. If your animal is in the shelter, it should receive the same courtesy that you would give it at home.
Chairman Paulk clarified:
If you did certify the ACOs, they’d still have to be attached to an agency, which means they’d have to be attached to the Sheriff’s office.
I think it’s interesting that he’s listening to the idea.

Here’s the video: Continue reading

Why are these reports not on the desk of the sheriff? —Jane Osborn

This comment from Jane Osborn came in last night on County Animal Shelter Issues. A good place to ask such questions of public officials might be at this evening’s County Commission meeting, 5:30 PM, 327 N. Ashley Street. Sheriff Chris Prine is often in attendance. -jsq
Abuse of an animal is a criminal offense. The GA Dept. of Agriculture is a regulatory agency able only to issue fines, not pursue criminal investigations. Why are these reports not on the desk of the sheriff of Lowndes County for criminal investigation? Dismissing the allegations because the people whose testimony was taken might be biased does no service to the current or future animals that will pass through the shelter.

Serpico for legalization of drugs

Connie Littlefield remarks that Legalizing marijuana makes pot smoking uncool:
I was in Amsterdam because my documentary, Damage Done: The Drug War Odyssey, was being screened as part of a Cannabis Tribunal. Former NYPD detective Frank Serpico, who is in my film, travelled with me.

We were invited to speak because Damage Done is about a group of cops, including Frank, and Canadian Senator Larry Campbell, who believe that the War on Drugs does more harm than the drugs themselves.

We presented a copy of our film to the chief of the Amsterdam-Amstelland Police, who told me that he became a cop because of Frank.

Her film is DAMAGE DONE: The Drug War Odyssey, here describe on the LEAP site: Continue reading

Your Lowndes County Tax Dollars at Work

On the county web pages there’s one about Where does your money go? Here’s a pie chart version:

Where does the Money Go?

Most of the county budget goes to law enforcement.

This does not include the larger budget of the Lowndes County School Board. I also don’t think it includes dedicated millage such as the one mil that goes to the Industrial Authority.

-jsq
John S. Quarterman