Lawsuit Relaxes Free Speech Regulations At State Capitol
The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado announced today that it has settled a 4-year-old lawsuit against a state agency regarding procedures for issuing permits and holding demonstrations on the steps of the State Capitol.The case was filed against the Colorado Department of Personnel and Administration (DPA), which was given new administrative powers in 2004 to cancel a capitol rally permit whenever the federal Department of Homeland Security declared a heightened security level, the color-coded alert system that was implemented after the September 11th attacks.
State patrol officers were also authorized to shut down a demonstration if any participant was found to have violated any law.
Under the settlement, the DPA director and law enforcement are not allowed to cancel a rally unless there is a specific threat to the State Capitol grounds and public safety.
The lawsuit was dismissed after the agreement, which was formulated right before the Colorado Court of Appeals was set to hear legal argument in the case, according to the Colorado ACLU.
The settlement also relaxed DPA regulations that further restricted solicitations of materials at Capitol rallies.
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