I feel like we have been over and over and over this but . . . apparently, local governments still feel like they can ignore state law and just throw out people’s property that they find. And they even put it in writing. Duh!
The latest DEMANDS from the county, well, at least they said “please” and then told us what they were going to do whether we like it or not. It’s so wonderful that when we were finally allowed to talk to them face to face (at least three people were) and forced to make a deal with them for a 30 day extension, they seem to still be coming up with more and more demands. I’m so glad that Occupy Madison is just going to be done with them on March 17th and we’ll be back to dealing with the still somewhat hostile, but communicative and more reasonable City of Madison! Ok, here’s the offending letter!
DATE: March 11, 2013
TO: Token Creek Campers
FROM: Darren Marsh Parks Director
SUBJECT: March 17, 2013 – End of Token Creek Special Use Permit
The special use permit for camping within Token Creek County Park campground will end on March 17, 2013.
On February 11, 2013 staff from Dane County’s Land and Water Resources and Human Services Departments along with representatives of the County Executive’s office and the County Board met with two campers and camper advocate Bruce Wallbaum – to discuss alternatives for the campers’ departure. Following that meeting, the County received a response from the campers indicating they would accept the offer to extend camping privileges an additional 30 days until March 17, 2013 for a total of 120 days of use, with the understanding that there would be no more camping on County properties until the public campgrounds open for general use.
As you plan your departure from the park please consider the following:
• Unless prior written notice and arrangements are made through me for any specific identified items still at the site – all personal belongings and common items shall be removed by Sunday March 17, 2013.
• There will be no inventory made of items remaining on site.
• Any items remaining on the site will be evaluated for reuse and donated to a non-profit. Waste or trash will be hauled to a landfill.
• Campers should place any unwanted items that may be re-usable under a tarp prior to departing.
• Site cleanup – no further cleanup of the site is requested. The sites will most likely need to be completely refurbished.
• The County will not provide any trucks or other equipment for your move.
• County transportation to and from the campground and the day shelter will cease on Friday afternoon March 15, 2013 (weather dependent).
• If requested, park staff can provide you with large garbage bags.
When the special use permit expires on the March 17th all electricity will be turned off; the restrooms, trash dumpsters and the special event signage will be removed from the site. The campground gate will be closed. The site will be officially closed for use until the necessary repairs are made.
Um, the state law, once again . . . .
170.105 Chattels found by public officials, employees or agents.
(1) Notwithstanding ss. 170.07 and 170.08, if an official, employee or agent of the state or of a county, city, village or town finds $25 or more or any goods having a value of at least $25 while acting within the scope of his or her official duties, employment or agency, he or she shall transfer custody of the found money or goods to the agency in the city, village or town where the money or goods were found that is designated by the city, village or town governing body to receive found money or goods. That agency shall post a notice of the found money or goods in 2 public places in the city, village or town.
(2) If the owner of lost money or goods appears within 90 days after the notice is posted under sub. (1) and makes out his or her right to the found money or goods, he or she shall have restitution of the money or goods or the value of the money or goods upon paying all of the costs and charges on the money or goods. If no owner of lost money or goods appears within 90 days after the notice is posted under sub. (1), the found money or goods become the property of the state or county, city, village or town whose official, employee or agent found the lost money or goods.
What is SO HARD to understand about that. Why do they think they can donate things without keeping them for 90 days? Why do they think they are above the law? I tell you, I’d rather deal with the police department in the City of Madison or even the County Sheriff’s Department than these Park Rangers that are so goofy with their power trips.
Unfortunately, there will be property left behind. The kitchen and supply tents have a few inches of water/now ice in the bottom of them and we won’t be able to remove those tents. There will be countless other items that are frozen into the ground. Electric cords, wood, other tents, etc. We really do want to clean up everything, but they seem to be unwilling to let us do so. It’s going to be really difficult moving this weekend in all this snow and ice.
If you want to help, the two things we need right now are vehicles to start moving on Saturday at noon – just meet us at Token Creek Campground. And pallets to put the tents on at the new site – about 70 pallets altogether which can be dropped off at 3600 Portage Road, the south end of the site. The awesome property owner there will be in violation of zoning code laws and at some point will probably have to pay some fines if the city pushes things, so later, we will need your help with a fundraiser. (He’s not asking for that, but we are offering because he has been so generous and so awesome!)
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