The Sheriff's Auxiliary completed it's first round of patrols to protect against livestock theft in the early morning hours of 16 February. The 16th was a full moon, which is a hig-risk period for rustling. Volunteers, coordinating with County Dispatch, spent four hours covering approximately 100 square miles of northwest Lawrence County. The Livestock Patrol program allows the Sheriff's Office to more effectively use limited numbers of deputies in the late night and early morning.
The Federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (the court with jurisdiction over the Western United States) released a decision today (PDF) in Peruta v. San Diego striking down a California requirement for showing "good cause" to obtain a firearm carry permit, affirming that to "bear arms" is as much of a protected right as keeping them.
At our January meeting, the Sheriff commissioned the Sheriff's Auxiliary's first Chaplain: Lt. Junior Grade Brian Moomey has been a Branson Police Officer, former Pastor of Impact Christian Center in Aurora, a prison guard, and a hospice Chaplain. As LCS Auxiliary's Unit Chaplain, Lt. Moomey will help us to recruit and train additional Chaplains and Chaplains' assistants.
There is a state Senate Committee hearing (General Laws) today for SB 613 (Second Amendment Protection Act or "SAPA") 2014 Regular Session. The Lawrence County Sheriff's Auxiliary submitted written testimony for the bill, primarily concerning the provisions creating the role of a School Protection Officer and its potential interaction with armed volunteers under law enforcement.
[Update 21 February 2014: This bill has passed the Missouri Senate 23-10.]
The Treasury Department has announced that hours of bona-fide volunteers and volunteer emergency responders (e.g., us) do not count toward an employer's count of full-time employees or full-time equivalent (FTE) hours. The Affordable Care Act (ACA, i.e. "ObamaCare") requires all employers with more than 50 FTE employees to provide health benefits or pay penalties.
A draft of an instruction manual for programming the Wouxun KG-UV6D dual-band radio from its keypad (field programming) is now available on Scribd and downloadable as a PDF. These radios are used by the Sheriff's Auxiliary and we have organized bulk purchases within the community.
Another video today for people to think about. This is a presentation by a man who created United Hatzalah in Israel: an organization of volunteers who put ambulances on motorcycles to decrease response time and provide support for critical patients while the full-size ambulance fights it's way through traffic. Over the years, his organization has grown to thousands of volunteers in several countries and has become a vehicle for knitting together Jews, Arabs, and Christians.