Tag Archives: property

Four Reforms to Note in Oklahoma Personal Asset Protection Act SB 838

scale_of_justice

Kaye Beach

Sept. 20, 2015

Sen. Kyle Loveless is the author of SB 838, the Personal Asset Protection Act which would give more protection to innocent property owners from the practice of civil asset forfeiture.   It is a good bill but to my dismay, I keep running into misconceptions about the measure.  Legislation is a little tricky to read and often, the media does not break them down very well.

In this post, I will show you the bill and point out the four major reforms it would accomplish.

A tiny bit of background first.  Civil asset forfeiture allows the government to take property that they assert to have been gained or used in the commission of a crime.

There is a difference between civil and criminal asset forfeiture.

Civil Forfeiture
Civil forfeitures are based on the unlawful use of a property irrespective of an owner’s culpability. Civil forfeitures followed the rules of civil procedure.

Criminal Forfeiture
Criminal forfeitures are subject to all the constitutional and statutory procedural safeguards available under criminal law. The forfeiture case and the criminal case are tried together. Forfeiture counts must be included in the indictment of the defendant which means the grand jury must find a basis for the forfeiture. At trial, the burden of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt.

Read more

Unlike criminal asset forfeiture, civil asset forfeiture does not require a conviction. In fact, the person who has their property taken under civil asset forfeiture may not even be charged with any crime.

OKLAHOMA CITY — Over a five-year period, law enforcement officials in 12 Oklahoma Counties seized more than $6 million in cash, almost $4 million of which was taken without any criminal charges…
Records indicate that of the $6.1 million dollars taken, only $2.1 million was seized from people who were actually charged with a crime, meaning more than 65 percent of the cash seized was taken without any criminal charges being filed.
Read more

Some legal experts would like to see asset forfeiture ended with few exceptions but most states aren’t willing to simply banish the practice. In the meantime, important reforms can and should be made.
Scott Bullock, senior attorney at the Institute for Justice offers five recommendations for states who are will not summarily call a halt to asset forfeiture. He recommends that states:
1. Place seized revenues in neutral funds
2. Increase the standard of proof for seizure to require “clear and convincing evidence” of a crime,
3. move the burden of proof to the government,
4. Make the tracking of seized assets more transparent,
5. Eliminate “equitable sharing” arrangements.

Link

SB 838 by Sen. Loveless would accomplish three out of those five reform recommendations (plus one more important one that is not on Bullock’s list )

I have heard some people say  that the only thing that this bill does is take the proceeds gained through civil asset forfeiture away from the police and give them to the state.   It’s not true.

I find four substantial reforms in SB838 in addition to removing the profit incentive for civil asset forfeiture.

1) SB 838 requires a conviction before property can be taken by the government
2) SB 838 puts the burden of proof on the government taking the property.  They have to prove guilt rather than the individual being threatened with the loss of their property having to prove innocence
3) SB 838 raises the amount of evidence required for the government to take the property
4) SB 838 increases due process by providing trial by jury to all who are involved in an asset forfeiture claim by the state.

If removing the direct profit incentive by moving the funds gained through asset forfeiture to the state’s general fund as proposed by SB 838, seems problematic to you, Sen. Loveless has gone on record stating that he is open to other methods of putting a buffer between the profit and the agency seizing the property.

So, let’s take a look at the actual bill, SB838

Remember, when reading amendatory legislation such as SB 838,  only the underlined or stuck though language is new (the changes being proposed by the bill) the rest is just a recitation of current law.

The very first thing SB 838 does is require that there be a conviction before taking a persons property by adding the language “upon a person’s conviction”

upon CONVICTION sb838

Currently there is no qualification that the property is subject to forfeiture only after a conviction. (That is why it is called civil as opposed to criminal asset forfeiture)

If SB 838 became law, The property could still be seized if the officer or agency has a reasonable suspicion that there is criminal wrongdoing associated with it however,  a criminal conviction would be required before property could be taken (forfeited).

As I read it, this bill would end civil asset forfeiture. All asset forfeitures would have to be criminal.

The next thing the bill does is strikes the portion of  existing law that puts the burden of proof on the individual having his property taken.

sb838 removes burden of proof from the individual

The third thing that SB838 does is increase the amount of evidence required for the government to take a person’s property.

SB838 would require “clear and convincing evidence” to be established before your property can be taken by the government.

cc sb838

Currently the standard for the state taking ownership of your property is by a “preponderance of the evidence” which means simply that if there is one feather weight of evidence that lends more than 50% certainty that plaintiff’s (in this case, the state) version of events is true, then they can take your cash or property from you.

“Clear and convincing evidence” raises the bar and affords much better protection to the innocent property owner.

The fourth reform in SB 838 is the addition of the right to a jury trial for any party to a forfeiture action.  It is my understanding that currently, there is no right to a jury trial in civil cases  involving less than $1,500.

jury trial
This language will afford greater due process in civil asset forfeiture cases.

The remainder of SB 838 deals with removing the direct profit incentive by requiring that the proceeds from asset forfeiture be moved to the state’s general fund. Currently the proceeds go directly to the agencies that forfeit the property and the concern is that this incentivizes civil asset forfeiture.

In my opinion, this bill simply affords Oklahomans the basic justice that those who have not run up against a civil asset forfeiture claim, think they already have.

Oklahoma Property Owners Bogged Down by FEMA’s Flood Plain Maps

Kaye Beach

June 8, 2012

Last summer I did some looking into the new FEMA flood maps that were causing a lot of trouble and expense for  property owners across the state and nation.

Okla. Water Resources Board/FEMA Flood Map Follies Aug. 24, 2011

Oklahomans Getting Soaked! Tag Teamed by FEMA and OWRB Aug. 30, 2011

Of course this is still going on.  The following article is an editorial about the nonsense going on with FEMA and its new flood maps in Shawnee, OK.  Below that is a very good article about the origins and purpose of FEMA’s Hazard Mitigation Planning that is the basis for the floodplain expansion.

This what “sustainability” looks like.

Bureaucrats behaving badly: FEMA flood plain mess in Shawnee

The Oklahoman Editorial | Published: June 4, 2012

IN government, small changes can have big consequences. Take the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s redrawing of flood plain maps. That simple change now threatens to derail economic development efforts and punish many homeowners with increased compliance costs.

Nowhere is that more apparent than in Shawnee. Thanks to the new maps, portions of the hospital and airport are now considered part of a flood plain, and a long-running effort to attract a national chain restaurant may be thwarted. The Shawnee Mission Plaza has been in constant development for 20 years with no problem. But now FEMA demands that officials conduct a new hydrology study for the 152-acre development before an eatery can be added.

That understandably frustrates local officials, who already paid for a hydrology study in 2006. The new study, they note, will provide no new detail, but will cost an extra $50,000 and delay the restaurant project for months, if not derail it.

The Global Safety Cult and the Abolition of Private Property

by William Roberts

Summary:

Chapter Seven of Agenda 21 calls for the establishment of a “culture of safety.” All of Agenda 21, Chapter 7 is the expansion of UN Resolution 44/236 and the foundational material for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA’s) “Multi-Jurisdictional All-Hazard Mitigation Planning” programme that fails to provide safety and destroys liberty.

Read the entire article here

America Sells Out. China Buys Up

Kaye Beach

June 24, 2011

Be sure to read Oklahoma: The Reddest State Gets a Little Redder contact Gov. Fallin  regarding about her intentions regarding the upcoming July Governors meeting in Utah with Chinese officials.

From The American Dream

originally posted June 18, 2011

The Chinese Government Is Buying Up Economic Assets And Huge Tracts Of Land All Over The United States

In 2011, America is for sale and the communist Chinese are eager buyers.  The Chinese government is using sovereign wealth funds and Chinese state-owned enterprises to buy up economic assets and huge tracts of land all over the United States.  Many of our politicians hail all of this “foreign investment” as something that is “good for America”, while many others see something much more sinister going on here.  In any event, this is a trend that is rapidly accelerating and that is causing great concern among patriotic Americans.

In my recent article entitled “China Wants To Construct A 50 Square Mile Self-Sustaining City South Of Boise, Idaho“, I examined a potential deal that Sinomach (a company controlled by the Chinese government) wants to do with the government of Idaho.  There will be more on this deal in a minute.

But first it is important to note that this is a phenomenon that is happening all across the United States.

Read More

They Know What’s Best for You: The Vision of the Annointed

Jan. 8, 2011

Another insightful article from the Antiplanner’s blog-

The Vision of the Urbanites

Jan. 3, 2011

As the Antiplanner has traveled and visited people all over the country, I’ve noticed an interesting phenomenon. Though I’ve met thousands of suburban and rural residents who are very happy with their homes and lifestyles, I’ve never met one who thinks the power of government should be used to force others to live in the same lifestyle. Yet I’ve met lots of urban residents who openly admit that they believe their lifestyle is so perfect that government should force more if not most people to live in dense, “walkable” cities.

Do cities turn people into liberal fascists? Or do liberal fascists naturally congregate into cities, and if so, why?

A general description of the phenomenon I’ve observed can be found in Thomas Sowell’s 1995 book, The Vision of the Anointed. Sowell says that America’s liberal elites view themselves as smarter or more insightful than everyone else, and thus qualified to impose their ideas on everyone else. The process of doing so, says Sowell, follows four steps (p. 8):

First, the anointed identify or, more usually, manufacture a crisis. Sowell’s book reviews three such crises: poverty, crime, and teen pregnancy, all of which were declining in the 1960s when the liberals turned them into crises. The crises relevant to this blog include such things as urban sprawl (totally manufactured as in fact it is not a problem at all) and auto driving (while some of the effects of driving are negative, these are easily corrected while the overall benefits of driving are positive).

Second, the anointed propose a solution that inevitably involves government action. Sowell makes it clear that the the leadership of the elites go out of their way to define or manufacture the crises in ways that make it appear the government action are the only solutions. In other words, their real goal is to make government bigger, not to solve problems. I don’t know if that is true or not, but it doesn’t really matter; what matters is they propose the wrong solutions to problems that often don’t really exist.

Third, once the solution is implemented, the results turn out to be very different, and often far worse, than predicted by the anointed. Crime, poverty, and teen pregnancy went up, not down, when government stepped in to “fix” these problems in the 1960s. In the case of urban planning, anti-sprawl policies made housing unaffordable and led to the recent mortgage crisis. Anti-automobile policies make congestion worse and therefore waste even more energy and produce more pollution.

The final stage is one of denial, in which the elites claim that their policies had nothing to do with the worsening results. Other factors were at work, they claim; in fact, the results might have been even worse if their enlightened policies had not been put into effect.

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The Junk Science of Walkability

 

The  more I study what is going on with the whole sustainability, comprehensive social engineering, save-the-world-through-city-planning nonsense, the madder I get but I don’t think running around hollering “Git Off My Land!” is going to help much.

I doubt that this is an uncommon reaction for those who are still attached to their life, liberty and property and the gut reaction to the efforts of regulatory zealots is entirely a natural one.

“As originally interpreted, the United States Constitution denied government the right to regulate and control the citizen in the use of his property. Over the years the commerce clause and the general welfare clause have been so interpreted as to permit both the state and Federal governments to regiment labor, agriculture, manufacturing, transportation, communication, finance and all other forms of economic activity. Today, if there is any limit on the power of government to regulate, no one knows what that limit is.” (H. Verlan Andersen, Many are Called But Few are Chosen)

Also see-James Madison’s thoughts on property ownership

I have found a wonderful, well researched  website that I’d like to share-The Antiplanner.

This site shares the all-American independent and free-enterprising sentiment but carries it a step further by getting down to the facts and figures that illustrate what many already know instinctively to be true-

“Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.”

— Albert Einstein (1950)

Enjoy!

The Junk Science of Walkability

Sigh. Another day, another junk science paper from the smart-growth advocates. This time it is a paper titled Walking the Walk, which argues that the fact that housing prices are higher in so-called walkable neighborhoods proves that “consumers and housing markets attach a positive value to living within easy walking distance of shopping, services, schools and parks.”

In fact, all the paper proves is that the person who wrote it doesn’t understand basic economics. The report is junk science because it confuses cost with demand and presumes that correlation equals causation.

The report measured walkability by the number of businesses and other destinations — groceries, restaurants, drug stores, schools, libraries, parks, etc. — located within one mile of of a residence. Scores were highest if destinations were within a quarter mile, and zero of they were more than a mile away. In general, then, the most walkable neighborhoods were the ones with the highest commercial densities.

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Who’s Really Getting “Green” in Oklahoma? Local Governments for Sustainability

“Private property and freedom are inseparable.” – George Washington

ICLEI

Harvey Ruvin, Vice Chair of the International Council on Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI),and Clerk of the Circuit and County Court in Miami-Dade County, Florida, has said that

“individual rights will have to take a back seat to the collective” in the process of implementing Sustainable Development.”

From “What is Sustainable Development?”

Taxpayer Dollars and Foundation Grants Help a U.N.-Inspired Group
Show U.S. Cities How to Enact Climate Change Policies

“ICLEI- Local
Governments for Sustainability” is a 501(c)
(3) nonprofi t created by a U.N. conference.
Now it’s offering advice to local politicians
and recruiting “strategic partners” to build
pressure for municipal energy regulation” Says The Capitol Research Center.


The City of Edmond is hosting  a Sustainability forum tonight at 6pm.

“Over 1200 cities, towns, counties, and their associations worldwide comprise ICLEI’s growing membership. ICLEI works with these and hundreds of other local governments through international performance-based, results-oriented campaigns and programs”

First of all, what is ICLEI?

It is an United Nations Environmental Program

International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI)

Also Known As:

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability

“ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is an international association of local governments as well as national and regional local government organizations who have made a commitment to sustainable development.  ICLEI provides technical consulting, training, and information services to build capacity, share knowledge, and support local government in the implementation of sustainable development at the local level. Our basic premise is that locally designed initiatives can provide an effective and cost-efficient way to achieve local, national, and global sustainability objectives.”

“ICLEI was founded in 1990 as the “International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives”.  The Council was established when more than 200 local governments from 43 countries convened at our inaugural conference, the World Congress of Local Governments for a Sustainable Future, at the United Nations in New York.

ICLEI Charter 2006
“The Association shall maintain its formal institutional relationships with its founder patrons, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the International Union of Local Authorities (IULA), the latter from 1 January 2004 merged into the newly established World Organisation of United Cities and Local Governments.”
Find out if your city is an ICLEI city-

ICLEI USA Membership List

Residents of cities investing in the ICLEI plan will be relentlessly treated to the upsides of participation, but what are the true implications?

From Freedoms Advocates;

While some of these policies sound good on the surface, they result in consequences such as:

  • High-density housing scams
  • Traffic congestion
  • Open space where access is not allowed
  • Government “partnering” with favored private businesses and non-profit agencies, using your tax money
  • Undermining Constitutional administration of government
  • Managed control over your life
  • Mismanagement of public utilities
  • Prohibitions on natural resource management leading to increased fire hazards, lack of water, and private property restrictions,
  • Increased taxes, fees, regulations and restrictions

Here very good outline of basic steps you can take to find out more about ICLEI and what you can do to oppose ICLEI in your city-

And here is more information on downsides of this plan for “sustainability” collected from various sources;

The American Thinker

UN Agenda 21 – Coming to a Neighborhood near You

Most Americans are unaware that one of the greatest threats to their freedom may be a United Nations program known as Agenda 21. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Sustainable Development created Agenda 21 as a sustainability agenda which is arguably an amalgamation of socialism and extreme environmentalism brushed with anti-American, anti-capitalist overtones.

The American Policy Center

In his book, Earth in the Balance, Al Gore warned that a “wrenching transformation” must take place to lead America away from the “horrors of the Industrial Revolution.” The process to do that is called Sustainable Development and its’ roots can be traced back to a UN policy document called Agenda 21, adopted at the UN’s Earth Summit in 1992.

Sustainable Development calls for changing the very infrastructure of the nation, away from private ownership and control of property to nothing short of central planning of the entire economy – often referred to as top-down control. Truly, Sustainable Development is designed to change our way of life.

Many are now finding non-elected regional governments and governing councils enforcing policy and regulations. As these policies are implemented, locally-elected officials are actually losing power and decision-making ability in their own communities. Most decisions are now being made behind the scenes in non-elected “sustainability councils” armed with truckloads of federal regulations, guidelines, and grant money.

In fact, a recent study reported that elected city councils and commissioners have lost approximately 10% of their legislative power during the past 10 years, while, through the consensus process, the power of private groups called Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) has increased by as much as 300%. It is a wrenching transformation, indeed.

Read More

Lots of information and resources here;

Concerned Citizens Against ICLEI

and Here-ICLEI Primer: Your Town and Freedom Threatened /Freedom Advocates

And finally a small collection of documents regarding Agenda 21 and Sustainable Development

City of Edmond Planning Department to Hold Sustainability Forum, Wants Feedback.

Edmond Oklahoma is an ICLEI City

——————————————————Got property?

Want Property?

Like to keep it?

Read.

In Brief

ICLEI Primer: Your Town and Freedom Threatened

Right now, in your town and neighborhood, policies are being implemented that will ultimately eliminate your freedoms and destroy your way of life. You need to know what’s going on to stop this process. Many town officials are selling us out to global regional development with help from the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI): Local Governments for Sustainability. ICLEI is used as one of the mechanisms to undo the political recognition of unalienable rights.

ICLEI uses the false premise and outright lies of anthropogenic global warming to change our way of life, for the worse!

ICLEI: Local Governments for Sustainability promotes Local Action 21, Local Agenda 21 and other United Nations programmes implemented through local town councils, planners, mayors and local governments.

ICLEI Primer-read more

______________________________

Edmond

Monday Dec 6, 2010 6pm

28 E. Main.

Edmond Community Center

City of Edmond Planning Department to Hold Sustainability Forum

Edmond Planning Department wants feedback on Edmond’s first Sustainability Plan

Issued: November 18, 2010

The City of Edmond Planning Department wants to hear the public’s ideas and priorities to be included in Edmond’s first Sustainability Plan.  The Edmond Sustainability Forum will be held on Monday, December 6th at 6PM at the Downtown Community Center.

The City has been awarded nearly a million dollars in Recovery Act funds from the US Department of Energy and the Oklahoma Department of Commerce. Staff developed a strategy for allocating those funds, which included the development of the Edmond Sustainability Plan. The remainder of the funds is being spent on energy saving technologies for city facilities and water wells, CNG conversion kits, energy building code training and equipment for inspectors.

For more information about the forum, contact Jones at 359-4518 or go to www.Edmond.com.
###

Agenda 21, Sustainability-Get Informed.

If you are not quite clear on what Agenda 21 or Sustainable Development is then download this primer and read it.  You will be crystal clear on the problem when you are done.

Historically, the right to own and use private property in America has been considered to be a sacred right. This right is being usurped by government, which now dictates to private property owners how their land may – and may not – be used. This paradigm shift from sacred private property rights to government-managed land use, is a perfect example of how sustainable development is transforming America into a government-managed society.

More


One more thing…


The Consensus Process

In communities across America, “stakeholder” councils are being formed, or have already been formed, to advance Agenda 21 to transform cities and towns into “sustainable communities.” The “consensus process” is used to gain the appearance of public support for the principles of sustainability, applied to a particular community. The process is designed to take the public policy- making function away from elected officials and place it in the hands of non-elected officials, while giving the appearance of broad public input into the decision-making process. Read more… – The Consensus Proces…


Policing for Profit

Civil forfeiture laws represent one of the most serious assaults on private property rights in the nation today.  Under civil forfeiture, police and prosecutors can seize your car or other property, sell it and use the proceeds to fund agency budgets—all without so much as charging you with a crime.  Unlike criminal forfeiture, where property is taken after its owner has been found guilty in a court of law, with civil forfeiture, owners need not be charged with or convicted of a crime to lose homes, cars, cash or other property.

Americans are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, but civil forfeiture turns that principle on its head.  With civil forfeiture, your property is guilty until you prove it innocent.

 

Read Policing for Profit

RICO, The War on Drugs and Asset Forfeiture

Civil asset forfeiture is based upon the medieval doctrine that when property is involved in a crime, the property becomes “guilty,” and can be “arrested” and forfeited, regardless of the guilt or innocence of the property’s owners. Under civil asset forfeiture, property—not an individual—is charged with an offense. The modern power of civil asset forfeiture in the United States dates back to the Civil War, when the Supreme Court affirmed the civil seizure of rebel property. In 1921 civil forfeiture was extended to violations of alcohol prohibition. During the 1980s, forfeiture was extended to drug trafficking and possession, and a host of other crimes, through the Comprehensive Crime Control Act of 1984, the Drug Abuse Act of 1986, and other laws. The power of civil asset forfeiture is being extended to virtually all misdemeanors and felonies.

This article was written by Jarret B Wollstein back in 1993.  It is a good history refresher and a good reminder for why we should be cautious about allowing our emotions or the appeal of a “good cause” to override good judgment when it comes to lawmaking.  The foot in the door to asset forfeiture was the fight against organized crime (RICO) and  War on Drugs.

Another good article on the subject written in 1991;

Government Seizures Victimize Innocent
Part One: The Overview
February 27, 1991.

An d a recent report fro the National Institute of Justice “Policing for Profit” with state by state law analysis 2010

The Governments War on Property

Jarret B. Wollstein

“A police dog scratched at your luggage, so we’re confiscating your life savings and you’ll never get it back.” In 1989, police stopped 49-year-old Ethel Hylton at Houston’s Hobby Airport and told her she was under arrest because a drug dog had scratched at her luggage. Agents searched her bags and strip-searched her, but they found no drugs. They did find $39,110 in cash, money she had received from an insurance settlement and her life savings, accumulated by working as a hotel housekeeper and hospital janitor for more than 20 years. Ethel Hylton completely documented where she got the money and was never charged with a crime. The police kept her money anyway. Nearly four years later, she is still trying to get her money back.

Ethel Hylton is just one of a large and growing list of Americans now numbering in the hundreds of thousands—who have been victimized by civil asset forfeiture. Under civil forfeiture, everything you own can be legally taken away from you without indictment, trial, or conviction. Suspicion of offenses which, if proven, might result in a $200 fine or probation, are being used to justify seizure of tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of property. Thousands of innocent Americans are losing their cars, homes, bank accounts, and businesses, based upon the claims of unidentified “informants” that illegal transactions took place on their property. Here are a few examples:

Thirty-year-old Ken Brown owned and operated Chemco, a small pool and gardening chemical supply company in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A few months after he opened his doors in 1986, agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) stopped by and told him to “get out of the chemical business.” A year later Ken found out why: His chief competitor in Albuquerque had an arrangement with the DEA, and neither the DEA nor the competitor wanted any competition. When Ken refused to close his doors in 1987, harassment from the DEA began and got steadily worse. First his UPS packages were opened and inspected. Then his deliveries were seized, his drivers were searched, and his suppliers were threatened. Next his house was searched by armed DEA agents. They found nothing. On November 19, 1991, the DEA arrested his manager and padlocked the doors to Chemco. The IRS was also brought in to investigate the company. The DEA charged Chemco with selling chemicals that could be used to manufacture drugs. On May 8, 1992, the DEA seized Ken Brown’s house and cars, and told him to sign an agreement to pay rent to the U.S. Marshals or “hit the street with my wife and eight-year-old son.” In May 1992 the DEA made Ken Brown an offer: “give us Chemco and we will give you all your personal belongings back.” Ken Brown refused and is still fighting.

Dr. Jonathan Wright operated the Takoma Medical Clinic in Kent, Washington. On May 6, 1992, nearly two dozen armed police and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) agents broke down his clinic’s door and pointed their weapons at him and his 15-person staff, mostly women. For the next 14 hours, the staff was held at gunpoint while the FDA ransacked the clinic. Neither Dr. Wright nor any of his employees was ever charged with a crime. That didn’t stop the police and FDA from seizing Dr. Wright’s books, laboratory equipment, supplies, patient records, reference books, and computers. The raid was part of a national FDA crackdown on nutritional therapists.

Willie Jones owned a small landscaping service in Nashville, Tennessee. When he paid cash for an airline ticket at Nashville Metro Airport on February 27, 1991, the ticket agent acted strangely, and said she would have to check in back what to do with the cash. The ticket agent returned and gave Mr. Jones his ticket. Ten minutes later, drug agents stopped and searched him. They found $9,600 in cash, which Jones was going to use to buy plants for his business. Jones explained he pays in cash “because that’s the way the growers want it.” That didn’t stop the DEA from taking his money. Jones was not charged with any crime. But the government took all of his operating cash, and nearly put him out of business.

Legal rights and protections that Americans have cherished for hundreds of years have been increasingly violated during the last two decades. Most of what you learned in school about your legal rights and protections is no longer true. A combination of rising crime, the growing power of government, and increasing concern about drugs has done tremendous damage to the Bill of Rights and our heritage of liberty. Few Americans realize how grave and how ominous that damage has been. Today the government has the power legally to seize your bank account, your house, or your business, without trial, hearing, or indictment. Everything you have worked for and accumulated over a lifetime can now be taken away from you at the whim of authorities. Black or white, rich or poor, we are all potential victims. And unless the laws are changed, there is very little you can legally do to protect your property.

Civil Asset Forfeiture

The seeds of social disaster were planted in 1970 when Congress enacted the federal Racketeering and Corrupt Influence (RICO) statutes (greatly expanded in 1984). Although the rhetoric supporting RICO focused upon defeating “organized crime,” the actual “crimes” targeted by RICO were rather vague. To be cited under RICO, all a person or firm need be suspected of are two instances of mail, wire, or securities fraud. “Fraud” is so broadly defined by RICO that the law covers virtually any offense involving mail, telephone, or stocks. Far from being limited to going after organized crime, RICO is now invoked in minor business cases, landlord-tenant disputes, anti-abortion protests, and even divorce cases.

Two aspects of RICO make it a particularly grave threat to civil liberties and justice: First, RICO effectively extended the jurisdiction of the federal government to nearly every conceivable property offense committed by anyone, anywhere in the United States. Second, RICO undermined our entire system of justice by giving the government the power to freeze or seize all of an individual’s or company’s assets based upon mere suspicion that an offense had occurred. No business can survive if its assets are frozen. A business that can’t pay its bills and operating expenses is a bankrupt business. Because RICO sanctions are so potentially devastating, the guilt or innocence of a business under investigation by government agents becomes immaterial. The mere threat of RICO sanctions is sufficient to force even the largest company to plead guilty and make a deal.

RICO was only the first of many statutes passed in the last 20 years enabling government agencies to seize property without indictment, trial, or conviction for any offense. The war on drugs and fear over growing crime have given us hundreds of new state, federal, and local laws, vastly expanding the government’s power to seize and forfeit property. Because most new seizure laws are civil rather than criminal, the government does not even have to charge the owners of property with a crime before making seizures. Even if you are charged with a crime and acquitted, everything you own can still be seized and forfeited. When your property is civilly forfeited, you have no right to a court-appointed attorney, no right to confront your accusers, no presumption of innocence, and no protection from double jeopardy. Even the Constitutional right to trial by jury is frequently denied in civil forfeiture cases.

Read More

Oklahoma Public Health Emergency Documents

TITLE 63 Chapter 24 Section 683.2 Emergency Management

Oklahoma Emergency Management Act of 2003

findings and Declarations

Title 63ch 24Section 683.2 Emergency Management


Question Submitted by: State Director Albert Ashwood, Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management

2007 OK AG 11 Decided: 04/23/2007

Oklahoma Attorney General Opinions

1. Does the Governor or any local jurisdictional body have the authority to order a mandatory evacuation during emergencies and/or natural disasters?

QuestionState Director Albert Ashwood, Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management 2007

MIPS OKLAHOMA MASS IMMUNIZATION PROPHYLAXIS PLAN

OKMIPS10581

____________

2007 Oklahoma Pandemic Influenza Management Plan Preparedness

2007 OK State Pandemic Plan

__________

Law Statute Public Health Powers

Quarantine, Isolation, vaccination, treatment, Law enforcement, appeal, property, liability

New 2008.

310:521-7-1. Examination
The Commissioner may issue an order for the examination of any individual upon the suspicion or confirmation that said individual has a communicable disease. Such examination may include a clinical examination, a specific diagnostic test or tests, or a specific laboratory test or tests. The purpose of such examination(s) and/or test(s) is to determine the presence of the suspected infectious organism or the presence of indicators of the suspected infectious organism, and to determine the contagious state of the individual to the extent possible.
[Source: Added at 25 Ok Reg 1148, eff 5-25-08]
310:521-7-2.

Treatment
The Commissioner may issue an order for the treatment of any individual suspected or confirmed to have a communicable disease. The Commissioner may also order the treatment of any individual or individuals exposed to certain infectious agents. Such treatment plans will be according to procedures developed within the Department.
[Source: Added at 25 Ok Reg 1148, eff 5-25-08]
310:521-

READ MORE

CHE referenceTitle 310 Ch521

Request for Proposal

Award Name Hospital Preparedness Program Cooperative Agreement
Award Year August 9, 2008 – August 8, 2009
CFDA Number 93.889
CFDA Name National Bioterrorism Hospital Preparedness Program
Federal Awarding Agency U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

OSDHReqComm Evac Fatality

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Oklahoma SCHOOLS Influenza Vaccination Template

September 13, 2009, 2:45 AM ET

2009 H1N1 Influenza School Template

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OKLAHOMA STRATEGIC NATIONAL STOCKPILE PLAN

okla2007 0606-SNS Plan-1

After 9/11 the Oklahoma Legislature established the Joint Homeland Security Legislative Task Force.  Members included:

  • Dr. Ken Levitt (Chair)
  • Senator Glenn Coffee
  • Senator Billy Mickle
  • Senator Jim Reynolds
  • Senator Dick Wilkerson
  • Professor Sujeet Shenoi
  • Representative Bill Paulk
  • Representative Dale Wells
  • Representative John Nance
  • Representative Dan Webb

In the months following 9/11, the federal government began the task of reorganizing in an attempt to better protect the homeland.  Congress passed the Homeland Security Act of 2002[1], which created the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), a cabinet level Department within the President’s administration.  Former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge was sworn in as the first Secretary of DHS on January 24, 2003.  The creation of DHS led to the most significant transformation of the United States government in more than half a century.  More than 22 agencies were moved under the DHS umbrella, including FEMA, the U.S. Fire Administration, the U.S. Secret Service, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Coast Guard.

The need existed to create a similar office in Oklahoma to develop, coordinate and implement homeland security efforts.  In July 2002 the Oklahoma Homeland Security Director assembled an administrative staff to focus on homeland security issues

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Oklahoma Emergency Operations Plan 2007

2007 State EOP

State of Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security 2004 ANNUAL REPORT

OK20045th draft annual report

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Central Oklahoma
Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI)
BUDGET SUBCOMMITTEE MEETING
Tuesday, May 12, 2009

_may09uasibudget

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JUNE 2009 UASI Report

june09uasibudget

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Oklahoma City Urban Area Security Initiative FY 2009 Budget Narrative JULY 2009

Medical/Public Health

The Medical and Public Health budget request was formulated through a collective effort of the principals involved with medical and public preparedness activities in Central Oklahoma. The individuals all met at the Oklahoma City/County Department for an afternoon to look at current needs requirements, and other funding sources.
There were three main areas for focused funding requests: Hospitals, EMS, and public health.

july09uasibudget

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Sept. 2009 Urban Area Security Initiative UASI Meeting

Sept09uasibudget


[1] Homeland Security Act of 2002 6 U.S.C. § § 101 et seq.

OKLAHOMA PUBLIC HEALTH AND MEDICAL RESPONSE SYSTEM OVERVIEW

Oklahoma Public Health and Medical Response System Overview (UPDATED)

Dept. of Corrections Pandemic Flu Plan

Typically, a large number of people would be
directed to these sites to obtain whatever treatments are
made available. In Oklahoma, a parallel distribution system
for sheltered-in populations, known as SIPS, will also be
deployed. The SIPS strategy focuses on populations that
are unable to go to a MIPS site to obtain needed supplies in
the event of a disaster. These populations include nursing
home residents and hospitalized patients. The inclusion of
the DOC in the SIPS strategy was a logical fit because the
inmates must remain incarcerated and needed supplies
must be obtained by facility representatives and taken
back to correctional facilities for distribution and administration

Jones_McDonald

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OK MOU Dep Army

1_MOAs_K-P=Garrison_or_Instl_Level_Nonfederal_Activities_M_Sill_Provides_Spt_MC07 Strategic National Stockpile 11Feb09

Oklahoma Emergency Operations Plan 2007

2007 State EOP

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2009       EMSystems Clients participate in nation-wide emergency hospital exercise
[PRESS RELEASE]
MILWAUKEE – An unprecedented number of EMSystems statewide clients successfully participated in a nation-wide National Hospital Available Beds for Emergencies and Disasters (or HAvBED) exercise. EMSystems’ clients who participated in this large-scale reporting exercise included Michigan, Idaho, Arkansas, Arizona, Kentucky, Oklahoma, and Louisiana. In accordance with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) / Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) Grant Guidance, this exercise required Hospital Available Beds for Emergencies and Disaster (HAvBED) reports to be submitted to the Department of Health and Human Services / Secretary Operations Center (SOC) within a 4 hour time period.

EMSystems Clients participate in nation 2009

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Technology

VERICHIP

The sensing system, as illustrated in Figure 4, can be targeted
to the products and applications required for bio-threat detection and diagnosis, ranging from Point-of-Intercept to Point-of-Care (Figure 5) surveillance and diagnostic sensor systems. The critical closed-cycle sensing system has been proof-of-concept demonstrated using a glucose sensing system model. (Figure 6). This model is being further developed into an integrated system for in vivo(in vivo: In the living organism, as opposed to in vitro (in the laboratory). glucose monitoring (Figure 7) through incorporation of VeriChip’s signal transduction and RFID communication
technologies (US Patent 7,125,382; “Embedded Bio-Sensor System”). Our experience with the glucose sensing system program, in combination with our systems for the application of our CARA high-throughput screening platform, has established the development workflow that will be applied to this bio-threat development program.

VeriChip Imbedded Virus-Sensor-White-Paper

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NATIONAL PREPAREDNESS

H1N1 Recommendation to President Obama

H1N1 Recommendations President PCAST_H1N1_Report

PUBLIC LAW 109–417—DEC. 19, 2006

NATIONAL PREPAREDNESS Law 2006

Joint Review of National Disaster Medical System (NDMS),Consolidated Report of RecommendationsJoint Review of National Disaster Medical System (NDMS),Consolidated Report of Recommendationsmitre-ndms

The National Response Framework (NRF) presents the guiding principles that enable all response partners to prepare for and provide a unified national response to disasters and emergencies – from the smallest incident to the largest catastrophe. The Framework defines the key principles, roles, and structures that organize the way we respond as a Nation. It describes how communities, tribes, States, the Federal Government, and private-sector and nongovernmental partners apply these principles for a coordinated, effective national response. The National Response Framework is always in effect, and elements can be implemented at any level at any time.

nrf-overview2008

North American Plan for Avian Flu

6301305-North-American-Plan-for-Avian-Pandemic-Influenza