The Honorable Mayor and Members of City Commission

On August 13, 2010, the City Commission directed our office to prepare a resolution recommending that the State legislature amend Michigan law to make Arts, Beats & Eats, as well as similar events where large groups of people are in close proximity, alcohol is served, and entertainment is offered for people of all ages, gun-free zones. The following resolution is offered for the Commission’s review and approval:

WHEREAS, the City of Royal Oak has become the host city for Arts, Beats & Eats, an arts and entertainment festival in its thirteenth year that offers a variety of entertainment, arts and crafts, food and activities for the entire family; and

WHEREAS, Michigan law is unclear as to whether or not a member of the general public can be prohibited from possessing a firearm at Arts, Beats & Eats, or a similar festival where large crowds of people are in close proximity, alcohol is served, and various types of entertainment are offered for people of all ages; and

WHEREAS, the rights of members of the general public to possess firearms at Arts, Beats & Eats became the subject of a significant amount of controversy prior to this year’s festival; and

WHEREAS, Michigan law provides that with the exception of security guards, peace officers, persons who are licensed to carry a concealed weapon, and those with the permission of an owner or agent to possess a firearm on his or her premises, firearms are not permitted in depository financial institutions or subsidiaries or affiliates of depository financial institutions; churches or other houses of worship; courts; theatres; sports arenas; day care centers; hospitals; or State-licensed liquor establishments; and

WHEREAS, Michigan law provides that persons who are licensed to carry a concealed weapon may not, as a general rule, carry a concealed pistol in a school or on school property; in a public or private child care or day care center; in a sports arena or stadium; in a State-licensed bar or tavern; on property or in a facility owned or operated by a church or other place of worship; in an entertainment facility with a seating capacity of 2,500 or more; in a hospital; or in a dormitory or classroom of a community college, college, or university; and

WHEREAS, in adopting these laws, the State has recognized that reasonable restrictions on the rights of an individual to possess a firearm are in the best interest of the public health, safety and welfare; and

WHEREAS, the City Commission believes that prohibiting the possession of a firearm at Arts, Beats & Eats and similar festivals where large crowds of people are in close proximity, alcohol is served, and various types of entertainment are offered for people of all ages would be a reasonable restriction that would be in the best interest of the public health, safety and welfare; and

WHEREAS, Michigan law prohibits a local unit of government from enacting or enforcing any ordinance or regulation pertaining to the possession of firearms, except as otherwise provided by Federal or State law;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Royal Oak City Commission hereby encourages our elected representatives to amend State law to prohibit the possession of firearms by members of the general public at Arts, Beats & Eats and similar festivals where large crowds of people are in close proximity, alcohol is served, and entertainment is offered for people of all ages.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the City Clerk is hereby directed to forward a copy of this resolution to Governor Jennifer Granholm, State Senator John Pappageorge and State Representative Marie Donigan.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the City Clerk is hereby directed to forward a copy of this resolution to all cities, townships and villages located in Oakland County.

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