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home : latest news : latest news May 4, 2016

1/4/2013 6:01:00 AM
Guns in, dress code out?

Suzanne Adams-Ockrassa
Miner Staff Reporter

KINGMAN - The security guards, gun lockers, metal detector and dress code at the Mohave County Administration Building could be on their way out.

The new Board of Supervisors Wednesday asked staff to study the liability the county could incur if it removed some of the security equipment and allowed citizens and employees to carry weapons in the building.

A walk-through metal detector, gun lockers and security guards were added to the building in March 2010 after several residents protested outside of the building carrying guns.

State law allows local governments to ask residents carrying guns to leave them in their car or lock them in a lock box before entering a government building.

"I'm in favor of removing the security from the administration building," said Golden Valley resident Frederick Williams. "I see no reason for all this security when you have the sheriff's office 100 yards away."

"An armed society is a polite society," Mohave Valley resident Roy Hagemyer said. "No one's going to come in here shooting up the place if they know there might be 40 other people with guns."

"I think the staff and the citizens have a right to provide for their own protection," District 5 Supervisor Steve Moss said.

There may have to be some restrictions on county employees carrying weapons in the building, but there should be no restrictions placed on citizen who want to carry, he said.

The Board got a round of applause after it put a moratorium on enforcing the county's dress code for meeting attendees and sent it back to staff for review.

The dress code prohibited halter tops, tank tops, mini skirts, short shorts, anything that would leave underwear exposed and clothing that advertised alcohol, drugs, tobacco or has offensive language printed on it. All tattoos with advertising or offensive language had to be covered.

It also outlawed all hats and head coverings unless a person had religious or medical exception.

"There's nothing in the (Arizona Revised Statutes) or open meeting law that allows the county to create a dress code," Williams said.

Williams ran into a problem with the county's dress code shortly after it was approved in March 2010.

He filed a complaint against the county with the Arizona Attorney General's Office in 2010 after security guards refused to allow him to wear a baseball cap during a Board meeting, even though he had a doctor's note.

Williams suffers from headaches that are caused by changes in temperature. The cold air conditioning in the Board meeting room gave him headaches.

The attorney general ruled the county complied with open meeting laws.

"This is a violation of open meeting laws and the U.S. Constitution. We have every right to come to every meeting dressed as we please, not as the county manager pleases," Hagemyer said.

District 2 Supervisor Hildy Angius said that since it was approved, the dress code has been twisted to prohibit wearing any article of clothing with an American flag on it.

She pointed out the dress code does not mention anything about clothing with American flags.

The only place she could find flags mentioned in the Board meeting rules was where the policy prohibited people from carrying flags and signs into the building and using them in a meeting.

"This is Mohave County. Personally I don't care what you wear. I think we should get rid of this," Angius said.

"I agree with you that it has been twisted and could be twisted again. It should be eliminated," Moss said.

He suggested a "no shirt, no shoes, no service" policy.

"Personally, I don't care if someone wants to hold up a sign that says 'Moss is a bad supervisor' or whatever," Moss added. "If someone wants to hold a up a sign during a meeting that's fine with me."

The Board also voted to have District 1 Supervisor Gary Watson take over as the Board's chairman and Angius as the vice chair. The Board meets again at 9:30 a.m. Monday.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, January 7, 2013
Article comment by: Colleen Pyle

I agree with AA 100 people that all have passionate opinions.... one gets out of control and BAM! I think that is assinine to let people carry a gun in a state or federal building!

Posted: Sunday, January 6, 2013
Article comment by: Common Sense

Let's take this whole mess looking at the past in the country and state. Guns are easy since most of the old west towns outlawed the wearing or carrying of a gun in city limits including all the famous towns like Tucson, Tombstone and the list goes on. Since Arizona has the highest number of gun deaths in the United States I question how civil a society guns make, and lets not forget our fore fathers in this state didn't think guns made a civil society and forbid them. Appropriate dress is real simple too since during the days of the Constitution people showed respect by wearing the appropriate dress when they went to official places. In fact, I was raised under the ethic you wear the appropriate attire and address officials in the appropriate manner based on the position. You are showing respect to the position rather than the person. Hats, well again I was always told the only person who wore a hat inside was a woman, and I am sorry if you are so tender the A/C gives you a headache maybe you should stay home instead of going through various temperature variants to get to the meetings. Since most of those spouting all this bunk claim to be Vets what is the military ruling on wearing a hat inside, you don't. Signs etc in the Board meetings, I guess I'll get a sign and stand down front so no one can see what is going on and when the idiots with the guns go to shoot, the Board members will speak up so they do not get shot.
The statements from this Board remind me of something you would expect to get from Boss Hogg on the Dukes of Hazard. Come to think of it the dress of the girls is now appropriate in the Board meetings.

Posted: Saturday, January 5, 2013
Article comment by: concerned citizen

I hope the council will live to regret their decision to allow weapons. The question that keeps going through my mind is, "what the heck is the over-riding need and desire to carry a weapon to a county borad meeting?"
I agree with "anonymous anonymous," why do so many wanna-bes wind up here in AZ?
At a county board meeting?

Posted: Saturday, January 5, 2013
Article comment by: desert dweller

Let's be very careful here....if we are not careful, we will actually be practicing "freedom"! Only a freak with a gun phobia thinks a person should not carry nor have the right to defend themselves....maybe when the day comes, they need someone to defend them, no one will be around with a concealed weapon...oops....never thot 'bout dat"

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: Wondering if the right people will get their dues.

If any members of the board of supervisors read this, then would you consider looking into the salary issues going on in the county. There's a department not far from where meetings are held where people are leaving in droves, to go work at agencies where they can make more money, the proper amount that they're supposed to be paid.

The county stands to lose a great deal of talent if pay raises are not instituted. It's not right to be paying employees that have been there 5+ years the same wage as someone who has just started. Longevity should merit the appropriate pay.

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: pu pupuhi

Lets see...Hmmm, what willl I take to the Town Hall meeting..Yea!! my double barrel shot gun, let see..uhmmm my midnight special, oh, little derringer..maybe , my shoulder shoulder might be handy with my 9mm, or .44 magnum..or all my ammo..yep..Town Hall meeting, here I come.. Gotta remember to take my CCW (carry conceal weapons card) need you fool, dis is arizona..

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: anonymous anonymous

Arizona has been a magnet for years for the social misfits from all over america and some it seems immigrating from Europe who might have read one to many western novels of a bygone era! We have the various xenophobes, racists, Billy the Kid wanna-bes, sorry I just find it all so amusing, the good thing is this is truly a minority, just they happen to be the loudest, angriest, miserable but still social misfits!

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: Rob Dowd

I was one of the persons in attendance at the Supervisors meeting this past week, and I would like to report that your security check is a farce. Upon entering the building, I stepped up to the screener with a baseball hat ON, with an American Flag Pin ON MY HAT, Put my incidental change, keys, and a small KNIFE (2 1/2 inches long) in the box to go through the scanner and was waved thru, However, My belt buckle set off the alarm and I had to subject to being wanded.... I then entered the auditorium with my hat still in place and wore it until the meeting started and then removed it.......

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: Scott Farkus

We all can see the possible catastrophe waiting to happen where the weapon ban is concerned. I leave it up to our elected officials to decide what is prudent.
As far as the dress code goes it is all subjective as to what is appropriate. Any numbskull that disrespects their self and others by dressing trashy should be tolerated but not given much credibility. They shouldn’t expect to be respected if they look like trash. They are the one the deputy should keep an eye on, because they are likely to be the person who will use their weapon. The way you dress DOES affect the way you behave.

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: John Schneider

Next thing they will do is spend another 50,000 to 100,000 to put up this huge piece of bullet proof glass between the BOS and the audience...what a nightmare that would be to have the audience armed…as for letting the employees carry guns…I have worked here for five years now with a three month break in the middle. I don’t want 75% of my coworkers here the carry a gun…

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: nnp .....

@anonynous....I suggest you take some time off and visit the Kingman library across from Centennial Park, and see the history books available next to the seating area in the rear of the library (facing west). You'll notice some large older books detailing Arizona history and that of the larger American West. One thing you will notice is that your idea of a disarmed effeminate citizenry was quite foreign to your forebears. In fact, suggesting it might have gotten you.....shot.

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: Capt. Nice

The heck with the county building, as I could care less. What I want to know is if our local Denny's ban cops with guns.
If so, I will be eating elsewhere as if they are that stupid, who knows what they put in the food or who is going to rob the place knowing at least there are no armed cops around.
Denny's had better clear this up fast as they are going to loose lots of good customers.
Hopefully our Denny's are not run by a bunch of ignorant liberals......hopefully!

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: 5 Pounds Over

Congratulations to our new Board. Also congratulations to our new Chairman & Vice Chairwoman. Things are looking up for Mohave County........

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: anonymous anonymous

40 armed folks in a room with anger over varous political issues, one loses their cool, now imagine 40 guns all firing at same time, flesh is not steel, bullets do not stop at the intended target they penetrate right through the possible offender into the innocent person behind them, to their right or left, no I think all this is a place looking for trouble, one looeny tune with a gun, in a crowded room with 100 or so folks disagreeing and all it will take is one spark and one has a mess but he I do not attend these things anyway since I vote when I wish to vent my opinion! As to legal liability guess they will have to have a incident to see how that all works out! Murphys Law if it can go wrong it will eventually go wrong! As to dress code cannot see any harm there unless they come in naked that might cause a stir to!

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

Let's be real here. If I can vote for any of these clowns while wearing any of the "banned" items, then I should be able to stand before them at a meeting.

Posted: Friday, January 4, 2013
Article comment by: az mac

I think we are going to have a decent constitutional BOS. They are doing great so far

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