Friday, January 15, 2016

Community meeting with Ammon Bundy called off for lack of venue

A meeting where armed protesters occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge planned to announce their exit strategy has been called off for want of a venue. "Our county judge has blocked our path," said Travis Williams, a Drewsey rancher on the Harney County Committee of Safety. "We're working on that right now. We will be having one soon, but we do not know when or where." The meeting was planned Friday night at the Harney County fairgrounds, but officials denied their request to use the spot. County commissioner Steven Grasty said Wednesday that the county won't let any group affiliated with the occupiers use its property. Members of the committee said the county has no right to deny use of the building because its leaders disagree with the group. They're considering legal action, saying the denial infringes on their rights under the First Amendment. A statement published on the committee's website states that it could file an action against Harney County for those violations. The statement goes on to say that the county can't block use of public facilities "as long as we follow the normal process."...more

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