NAC Update
Washington House Bill 2645
January 29, 2004

Return to Current NAC Updates | Return to NAC Home Page |
View the Existing Washington State Law |
View the text of the Proposed Law |
View the NAC Action Alert of January 24, 2004 |
|  Listen to audio from the hearing
        
NOTE: THE STATE'S AUDIO RECORD BEGINS PART WAY THROUGH THE
                         HEARING. THE HEARING FOR HB 2645 BEGIN APPROXIMATELY
                         15 MINUTES AND 45 SECONDS INTO THE RECORDING.

             |
WINDOWS MEDIA FORMAT (.WMA) |
             |
REAL AUDIO FORMAT (.RA) |

**********************************************************************
                     NATURIST ACTION COMMITTEE
                             UPDATE
**********************************************************************
                 http://www.naturistsociety.com/NAC/
**********************************************************************

DATE:    January 29, 2004
SUBJECT: Washington State
TO:      All Naturists

Dear Naturist,

Fast work by the Naturist Action Committee has resulted in the likely derailment of House Bill 2645 in the Washington State legislature.

The measure proposes a significant change to the state's statute assessing punishment for indecent exposure and would allow convictions under any municipal indecent exposure ordinance to count toward felony punishment status.

BACKGROUND

For a more detailed discussion of the background of this bill, refer to the NAC Action Alert released January 24, 2004. Archives of NAC Action Alerts, Advisories and Updates are available on the web site of the Naturist Action Committee: www.naturistsociety.com/NAC

WHAT IS NAC DOING?

Upon the introduction of the bill, the Naturist Action Committee quickly hired a team of professional legislative lobbyists to advise and assist NAC's grassroots efforts in this matter. NAC is working with the lobbyists behind the scenes, but it is also assuming a high profile in opposition to the bill. NAC sent a crew to the State Capitol to voice their concerns at a hearing in which legislators considered the bill.

PUBLIC HEARING - JANUARY 28, 2004

A public hearing for Washington HB 2645 was held yesterday, January 28, in the state capitol at Olympia. Accompanying Naturist Action Committee board members Mark Storey and Judy Williams at the hearing were NAC Area Representative Howard Williamson, Daniel Johnson of the Body Freedom Collaborative and Sandra Rice.

Testimony was given before the House Criminal Justice & Corrections Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Al O'Brien (D-Mountlake Terrace). O'Brien is also the sponsor of HB 2645.

Speaking in favor of the bill was Detective Jonathan Jensen from the police department of the City of Everett. The city would like to see its indecent exposure ordinance given the same weight as state law in counting convictions leading to felony punishment status. Cities have the option of filing state charges, but the resulting prosecutions go through county courts. Cases filed under municipal ordinances go through municipal courts, allowing a city to retain both control and revenue.

Testifying against the bill was Mark Storey of the Naturist Action Committee. NAC's position is that a change to the existing scheme of determining punishment is unnecessary. Including local ordinances exposes a citizen to the risk of being labeled a felon for having transgressed some fairly ridiculous municipal indecent exposure ordinance. Storey gave specific examples, noting that if HB 2645 were to become law, no skinny-dipper could ever afford simply to "pay the fine and move on." The loading effect on court dockets throughout the state would be undesirable, and legal costs would increase for individuals and municipalities alike.


RESULT

No vote was taken at the committee hearing. However, as a result of NAC's efforts both inside and outside the hearing room, it appears unlikely at this point that HB 2645 will advance. Representatives from the City of Everett may make an attempt to revive the legislation, but even Rep. O'Brien, the sponsor of the bill, admits there is little life left in it.

We're certainly not out of the woods yet, but NAC is cautiously optimistic that we will ultimately achieve a favorable outcome in this matter.


WHAT CAN I DO?

This is a NAC Update. The Naturist Action Committee is not asking you to take action at this time. Please watch for NAC Action Alerts, Advisories and Updates on this and other important matters.


MORE INFORMATION

Find more information on the web site of the Naturist Action Committee:

  www.naturistsociety.com/NAC

  Select "Alerts, Advisories & Updates," then click on "View Current," to select and view this NAC Update. The Update includes links that allow you to:

  View the text of the existing Washington law,
  View the complete text of House Bill 2645,
  View the NAC Action Alert on this topic from January 24,
  Listen to an audio recording of the hearing testimony.


PLEASE HELP NAC HELP WASHINGTON NATURISTS!

It's always easier to ask for donations when there's a threat instead of a solution, but NAC's quick action neutralized this threat before it could gather strength and pose a greater risk. That's worth a lot!

NAC's decision to hire a legislative lobbyist in this matter has proven to be a very sound move. However, you know that lobbyists are expensive. NAC stuck its neck out to take a strong stand in Washington, and now we need your help to follow through.

Won't you please donate to NAC today? Use the address below, or call toll free (800) 886-7230 to donate by phone using your MasterCard or Visa.

  NAC
  PO Box 132
  Oshkosh, WI 54903
 

Thank you for choosing to make a difference!

Naturally,

Bob Morton
Executive Director
Naturist Action Committee

---------------------------------------------------------------
Naturist Action Committee (NAC) - PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Executive Dir. Bob Morton      - <ctnudists@aol.com>
Board Member Mark Storey       - <storey98@aol.com>
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick - <naturist@sunclad.com>
---------------------------------------------------------------
 
 

  | Top | Return to Current NAC Advisories | Return to NAC Home Page |