Population (2000 Census): 1,497
Date Passed: 02/22/05
A Resolution Expressing the Commitment of the Town of Paonia, Colorado, to Civil Rights and Liberties: RESOLUTION 2005-01
Approved by: Paonia Town Council
WHEREAS, following the attacks on America of September 11, 2001 the Congress passed the “Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act” (USA Patriot Act) (PL 107-56) on October 26, 2001; and
WHEREAS, the provision of the USA Patriot Act expand the authority of the federal government to detain and investigate citizens and non-citizens and engage in electronic surveillance of citizens and non-citizens; and
WHEREAS, many people throughout communities across the nation are concerned that certain provision in the USA Patriot Act threaten civil rights and liberties guaranteed under the United States Constitution; and
WHEREAS, the Town of Paonia has been, and remains, committed to the protection of civil rights and liberties for all people as expressed in the United States and the State of Colorado Constitutions; the first oath a council member has to swear is to the Constitution, and
WHEREAS, the policy of the Paonia Police Department is that all detentions or stops must be supported by reasonable suspicion that a crime has been committed or is about to be committed, and that all arrests and searches of person and/or property by officers in the Town of Paonia, Colorado must be conducted in compliance with the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution and Article II, Section 7 of the Colorado Constitution; and
WHEREAS, the policy of the Paonia Police Department is, further, that officers shall not consider ancestry, race, ethnicity, national origin, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender variance, marital status, physical or mental disability, or religion as a sole basis for requesting consent to search;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF THE TOWN OF PAONIA, COLORADO:
1) The Town of Paonia has been, and remains, firmly committed to the protection of civil rights and liberties for all people.
2) The Town of Paonia affirms the following principles:
a. Every person has the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure, as clearly stated in the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution.
b. Neither stops, nor arrests may be made without establishing reasonable suspicion or probable cause that a crime has been committed or is about to be committed.
c. Every person has a right to equal protection under the law and the right not to be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law, and
d. Every person has the right to free speech and freedom of association as provided under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution and court opinions thereon.
3) That when the Paonia Police Department engage in public safety intelligence gathering as part of law enforcement and of national security, it intends such intelligence gathering comply with the following policy: no information about political, religious or social views, associations, or activities shall be collected unless the information relates to public safety concerns or suspicion of criminal activity or the potential for criminal activity.
4) That the Town of Paonia affirms it commitment to human and civil rights and to unbiased policing as expressed in the policies of the Paonia Police Department, which firmly adheres to the principle that no law enforcement agency, or other Town agency may profile or discriminate against any person solely on the basis of ancestry, race, ethnicity, national origin, color, age sex, sexual orientation, gender variance, marital status, physical or mental disability, or religion, nor shall Town agencies assist other agencies in practices that violate these policies.
5) That the Town of Paonia affirms its strong opposition to terrorism, yet also affirms that any efforts to end terrorism should not be waged at the expense of essential civil rights and liberties of the people of the Town of Paonia, the United States of America and the World.
6) That the Paonia Town Clerk attest and affix the seal of the Town of Paonia to this Resolution and that a copy be transmitted to President George W. Bush, Attorney General Alfredo Gonzales, and Governor Bill Owens.