Keep Casper Smoke Free Loses Smoking Ban Issue Due To Appeal Approach Error
Keep Casper Smoke Free's quest for a city wide smoking ban has taken a step backwards, because the Wyoming Supreme Court says they pursued the case in the wrong way.
In June 2012, the Casper City Council passed an ordinance prohibiting smoking in all enclosed areas of public places.
One year later, a new council loosened some of the restrictions on where smoking was prohibited.
Keep Casper Smoke Free put together a referendum petition, to put the issue up to the Casper voters, however the Casper city clerk determined that the group came up short on the minimum number of required signatures, because the addresses of some of the voters on the petition, did not match the address entered when they registered to vote.
K.C.S.F. filed a complaint and a Natrona County District Court judge ruled that the city clerk acted arbitrarily.
If a voter moves from Point A to Point B, but stays within the city limits, then their referendum signature should not be disqualified, because the city has no deadline on when a voter has to change their voter registration.
The city said K.C.S.F. should have filed a petition for review in accordance with the Wyoming Rules of Appellate Procedure (W.R.A.P.), but instead opted to file a declaratory judgement action, thus the District Court did not have jurisdiction to rule on the issue.
The Supreme Court agreed with K.C.S.F. that the city clerk acted arbitrarily, but also agreed with the city, that the District Court didn't have jurisdiction.