NAC Update
Brattleboro, Vermont

August 23, 2007

RESOURCES

TOWN OF BRATTLEBORO

NATURIST ACTION COMMITTEE / NATURIST EDUCATION FOUNDATION

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                       NATURIST ACTION COMMITTEE                                 UPDATE
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Copyright 2007 by the Naturist Action Committee, which is responsible for its content. Permission is granted for the posting, forwarding or redistribution of this message, provided that it is reproduced in its entirety and without alteration.

DATE: August 23, 2007
SUBJECT: Brattleboro, VT
TO: All Naturists

Dear Naturist,

This is an Update from the Naturist Action Committee concerning Brattleboro, Vermont.  

BRIEF HISTORY AND DISCUSSION
After receiving complaints from town residents and business owners concerning public nudity, Brattleboro's Selectboard wrote an "emergency" temporary ordinance that prohibits nudity in the downtown area, in the town park, in the village of West Brattleboro, and also within 250 feet of a school or place of worship. The Selectboard enacted this ordinance by a margin of 3 to 2 and considered making this ordinance permanent at their meeting on the evening of Aug. 21.

At the meeting, Brattleboro residents spoke in favor and in opposition to the ordinance, and the Selectboard debated the issue at length. One Selectboard member proposed an amendment to the ordinance, removing all references to buttocks and breasts, which passed by a vote of 3-2. In an ironic twist, the Selectboard member who sponsored the ordinance refused to vote in favor of making the amended ordinance permanent. As a result, the ordinance failed to pass, 2-3.

While this outcome may seem to be a victory for naturists and proponents of personal freedom, the decision is not final. The temporary ordinance banning public nudity is still in effect, and will not expire for another month. At that time, the Selectboard may reconsider the ordinance and decide whether or not to make it permanent.

WHAT IS NAC DOING?
The Naturist Action Committee has been working to organize and support Brattleboro residents who oppose the ordinance and will speak against making the ordinance permanent.

NAC board member Virginia Schnee has made three trips to Brattleboro, including attendance at the two most recent meetings of the Selectboard. Additionally, she has provided NAC's support to local residents in the form of talking points and brochures to distribute.

WHAT IS NAC ASKING YOU TO DO?
This is an Update. NAC is asking that you NOT take action at this time. NAC is asking that you attend future Selectboard meetings ONLY if you are a resident of Brattleboro. Any participation from naturists outside of Brattleboro or surrounding Vermont towns, no matter how well intentioned, may not be appreciated by the Selectboard and could seriously jeopardize the carefully organized efforts of NAC to support local residents.

MORE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES
Additional information and links are available, along with this NAC Update, on the web site of the Naturist Action Committee.

http://www.naturistaction.org

Select "Alerts" and find this NAC Update under Current Updates.

PLEASE HELP NAC TO CONTINUE HELPING NATURISTS!
The Naturist Action Committee is a volunteer nonprofit organization that exists to advance and protect the rights of naturists throughout North America. Identifying and fighting bad local lawmaking is necessary, but it's expensive. To do its job, NAC relies entirely on the voluntary generosity of supporters like you. To donate to NAC, use the address below:

        NAC
        PO Box 132
        Oshkosh, WI 54903

Or call toll free (800) 886-7230 to donate by phone using your MasterCard, Visa or Discover Card.

Or use your credit card to make a convenient online donation:
http://www.naturistaction.org/donate/

Thank you for choosing to make a difference.

Naturally,

Virginia Schnee
Board Member
Naturist Action Committee

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Naturist Action Committee (NAC) - PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Executive Dir. Bob Morton -
execdir@naturistaction.org
Board Member Virginia Schnee –
virginia@schnee.com
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick -
naturist@sunclad.com
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PROPOSED BRATTLEBORO, VT, PUBLIC NUDITY ORDINANCE

Article V.
Public Nudity Ordinance

Authority

This ordinance is enacted pursuant to the authority granted the town to promote the public health, safety, welfare, and convenience contained in 24 V.S.A. 2291, and Article IV, Sections 27-29 of the Charter of the Town of Brattleboro. This ordinance shall be a civil ordinance within the meaning of 24 V.S.A. Chapter 59.

Purpose

It is the purpose of this ordinance to promote public welfare and convenience by regulating public nudity, which is deemed to be a nuisance for commerce.

Definitions

"Nudity" shall mean the showing of the human male or female genitals, pubic area or buttocks with less than a full opaque covering, or the showing of the female breast with less than a full opaque covering of any portion of the areola. A woman breastfeeding her child, irrespective of whether the breast is covered, shall not be considered in a state of nudity.

"Prohibited Public Location" shall mean any location likely to be observed by members of the public and where the public is present or likely to be present, including streets, sidewalks, parks, parking lots, and business and commercial establishments (both for profit and not- for-profit). "Prohibited Public Location" shall not include doctor's offices, hospitals, enclosed single sex public restrooms or functional showers, locker and/or dressing room facilities, nor shall it include those places in which nudity or exposure to nudity is necessarily and customarily expected outside of the home and the sphere of privacy constitutionally protected therein.

"Geographical Location" shall mean: the Brattleboro Downtown District as defined in the Zoning Bylaws; The Brattleboro Common, being bounded by Route 30, Route 5/Putney Road and Park Place; the Route 5 Corridor from the Dummerston town line to the Guilford town line being within 200 feet of the center line of the highway; the Route 9 Corridor from main Street west to the intersection with Sunset Lake Road, being within 200 feet of the center line of the highway; within 250 feet of any school, church or place of worship; Living Memorial Park; and the Village of West Brattleboro as defined in the Zoning Bylaws.

Public Nudity Prohibited

Within a Geographic Location as defined above, no person shall knowingly or intentionally appear in a Prohibited Public Location in a state of Nudity.

Civil Penalty

An issuing municipal official is authorized to recover civil penalties in the following amounts for each violation:

First offense: $100

Second offense: $200

Third offense: $300

Fourth offense: $400

Fifth offense and up: $500

Waiver Fee

An issuing municipal official is authorized to recover a waiver fee, in lieu of civil penalty, in the amounts, for any person who declines to contest a municipal complaint and pays the waiver fee:

First offense: $50

Second offense: $125

Third offense: $200

Fourth offense: $275

Fifth offense and up: $350

Other Relief

In addition to the enforcement procedures available before the traffic and municipal ordinance bureau, the Town of Brattleboro is authorized to commence a civil action to obtain injunctive and other appropriate relief, or to pursue any other remedy authorized by law.

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