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Ordinance draft on protests sent back to the drawing board
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A draft ordinance amendment that would have required protesters to apply 60 days in advance for organized protest events was unanimously denied by the Planning Commission at their Oct.8 meeting.

The amendment banned organized protest and rally events, except funerals, and would have required an application 60 days in advance, said member Tom Harrison.
All four members present - Harrison, vice chair Chuck Russell, Chairman Maury Wilson and member Alan Jones - voted to deny the draft.

"We thought it was inappropriate," said Harrison. "So we basically said, send it back, let legal look at it, get rid of the 60 days and paragraph I."
The amendment had come up relatively quickly and was not known about ahead of time, said Harrison and Russell.

"Normally we get drafts, and that's pretty common," said Russell. "When everybody is in agreement with the draft, we don't mind letting the attorneys and staffers fine tune it." When the draft is something nobody likes, which is very rare, said Russell, the committee asks for a more finalized copy.

The next planning committee meeting is Nov. 12 at 7 p.m. at the Assembly Hall located at 901 Main Street.