Robert Wagner, a Blakeley Town Board Supervisor in Blakeley Township, Minnesota (and not the Hollywood star), gets to the heart of the problem with the local Social Host Law in Scott County. It’s too darn vague.
Wagner points out the legal impact when the phrase “after observing or being alerted to illegal activity” is omitted in the county’s version, in his March 24th Letter to the Editor of the local newspaper, the Jordan Independent:
“In law, language is everything, and there is a huge difference between townships and cities on this subject. Under the township law, a rural homeowner could face penalty and lawsuit if an underage person entered their garage and stole beer from the refrigerator because they failed to take “reasonable” measures to prevent this, such as locking the refrigerator or garage. Under city law, the homeowner would only be responsible for violating this law if he failed to take action after observing the break-in or being told of the break-in.”
Bravo, Mr. Wagner, for your efforts in this area since 2009. NOTE: Blakeley was joined by five other townships in the county in opposing the language of the county’s ordinance when it was passed in June 2009.