Soledad, CA Resolution



  WHEREAS, the City of Soledad is committed to protecting the civil rights and civil liberties of its residents; and

  WHEREAS, the City of Soledad has a diverse population, including immigrants, students, and working people, whose contributions to the community are vital to its character and function; and

  WHEREAS, the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights guarantee to all persons living in the United States these fundamental rights:  freedom of religion, speech, assembly; protection from unreasonable searches and seizures; due process and equal protection to any person; equality before the law and the presumption of innocence; access to counsel in judicial proceedings; and a fair, speedy and public trial; and

  WHEREAS, several new federal laws, regulations, and executive orders issued during the past year including the adoption of certain provisions of the USA Patriot Act now threaten these constitutional rights and liberties; and

  WHEREAS, these new powers threaten the civil rights and civil liberties of Soledad residents, and particularly affect those of Latino, Arab-American, Muslim, and South Asian backgrounds and thereby encourages racial profiling by law enforcement agencies and hate crimes by individuals in the community; and

  WHEREAS, thirty years ago this November, California voters overwhelmingly adopted a Constitutional right to privacy to protect against a ""proliferation of government snooping and data collecting [that] is threatening to destroy our traditional freedoms"".

  NOW THEREFORE, BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED by the City Council of the City of Soledad as follows:

1. The Council affirms its strong opposition to terrorism but also affirms that any efforts to end terrorism not be waged at the expense of the fundamental civil rights and liberties of the people of Soledad and the United States.

2. The Council affirms its strong support for fundamental constitutional rights and its opposition to the provisions of the USA Patriot Act that infringe on important civil liberties.

3. The Council affirms its strong support for the constitutional rights for immigrants and immigrant communities in Soledad and opposes racial profiling of such citizens.


4. The Council directs the City Manager to determine how the new federal powers are being used in Soledad and how they are affecting Soledad residents.  The City Manager may do this by requesting the following information from the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California and the Special Agent in Charge for the Soledad area.  The City Manager may also determine if any information listed below is held by City agencies.  The City Manager shall report the results to the City Council on a periodic basis.

a. The following information regarding all detainees that have been held in the City of Soledad as a result of terrorism investigations:  name of detainee, where detainee is being held, circumstances of detention, any charges brought against the detainee, whether the detainee has been transferred, whether the detainee has been deported, if the detainee has legal representation, and the name of the attorney.

b. The number of times library records have been requested from Soledad libraries under powers granted in the USA Patriot Act.

c. The number of times records have been requested from bookstores in Soledad under powers granted in the USA Patriot Act.

d. The number of ""sneak and peak"" searches executed in Soledad under the powers granted in the USA Patriot Act.

e. The number of individuals living in Soledad who have been questioned in connection with terrorism investigations, and the race, ethnicity, and immigration status of those individuals.

f. The number of wiretaps utilized in Soledad under the powers granted in the USA Patriot Act.

g. The number of religious institutions, political rallies, and political meetings monitored in Soledad.

h. The number of terrorism related tips received from Soledad residents.

i. The number of residents of Soledad being held in connection with civil immigration violations and the nationality of those being held.

j. The number of requests made to the Soledad Police Department for assistance with the execution of any of the above powers, including the number of times local police have detained individuals on civil immigration violations based on information obtained from the National Crime Center database.

5. The Council directs that to the extent legally possible, no City employee or department shall officially assist or voluntarily cooperate with investigations, interrogations or arrest procedures, public or clandestine, that are in violation of individuals' civil rights or civil liberties as specified by the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights and California Constitution.

6. The Council strongly urges public libraries, other institutions, organizations and businesses within the City of Soledad to post in a prominent place within the building a notice to the public that under provisions of the U.S. Patriot Act, records of borrowed books and other materials, private financial records, medical and educational and other personal records, as applicable, may be obtained by federal agents.

7. The Council directs the City Manager to send a letter and a copy of this resolution to Senators Dianne Feinstein, Barbara Boxer, and Congressperson Sam Farr urging them to work to repeal all provisions of the U.S. Patriot Act that infringe on civil liberties.  A copy of the letter and resolution shall also be sent to President Bush and Attorney General Ashcroft.

  PASSED AND ADOPTED by the City Council of the City of Soledad at a regular meeting duly held on the 15th of October 2003, by the following vote:
AYES, and in favor thereof, Councilmembers:  Christopher Bourke, Stefanie De La Rosa, Juan Saavedra, Mayor Pro Tem Ted Barrera, Mayor Richard Ortiz

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