Donegal Township Democratic Self-Government and Local Control Ordinance
AN ORDINANCE BY THE SECOND CLASS TOWNSHIP OF DONEGAL TOWNSHIP, WASHINGTON COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA, ELIMINATING LEGAL POWERS AND PRIVILEGES FROM CORPORATIONS DOING BUSINESS WITHIN DONEGAL TOWNSHIP TO
VINDICATE PEOPLE’S RIGHT TO DEMOCRATIC SELF-GOVERNANCE
ORDINANCE NO. _______ OF 2007
VINDICATE PEOPLE’S RIGHT TO DEMOCRATIC SELF-GOVERNANCE
ORDINANCE NO. _______ OF 2007
Section 1. Name. The name of this Ordinance shall be the “Donegal Township Democratic Self-Government and Local Control Ordinance.”
Section 2. Authority. This Ordinance is adopted and enacted pursuant to the inherent authority of the residents of Donegal Township to self-government, and to authority granted to Donegal Township by all relevant state and federal Constitutions and laws, including, but not limited to, the following:
The Declaration of Independence, which declares that the people of Donegal Township are born with “certain unalienable rights” and that governments are instituted among people to secure those rights;
The Pennsylvania Constitution, Article 1, Section 2, which declares that “all power is inherent in the people and all free governments are instituted for their peace, safety, and happiness;”
The Pennsylvania Constitution, Article 1, Section 26, which declares that “neither the Commonwealth nor any political subdivision thereof shall deny to any person the enjoyment of any civil right;”
The provisions of The Second Class Township Code, as codified at 53 P.S. § 65101 et seq., which authorizes the Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township to provide for the protection and preservation of natural and human resources, to promote, protect, and facilitate public health, safety, and general welfare, and to preserve and protect farmland, woodland, and the recreational uses of land within the Township;
The provisions of The Second Class Township Code, Article XV, as codified at 53 P.S. § 66506, which authorizes the Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township to enact ordinances necessary for the proper management, care, and control of the township and its finances and the maintenance of peace, good government, health, and welfare of the township and its citizens, trade, commerce, and manufacturers;
The provisions of The Second Class Township Code, Article XV, as codified at 53 P.S. § 66527, which empowers the Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township to adopt ordinances to secure the safety of persons or property within the township; and
The provisions of The Second Class Township Code, Article XV, as codified at 53 P.S. § 66529, which empowers the Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township to prohibit nuisances on private and public property and the carrying on of any offensive manufacture or business.
Section 3. Findings and General Purpose. The Donegal Township Board of Supervisors recognizes that:
(1) A corporation is a legal fiction created and operated by the express permission of the people of Donegal Township as citizens of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania;
(2) Interpretation of the U.S. Constitution by unelected Supreme Court justices to include corporations in the term “persons” has long denied the peoples’ exercise of rights by endowing corporations with constitutional privileges intended solely to protect the citizens of the United States or natural persons within its borders. Enforcement of those corporate “rights” by courts and governments has long wrought havoc on the peoples’ democratic process;
(3) Interpretation of the U.S. Constitution by Supreme Court justices to afford corporations the protections of the Commerce Clause (Article I, §8 of the Constitution of the United States) and the Contracts Clause (Article I, §10 of the Constitution of the United States) has prevented communities and governments from securing the health, safety, welfare, and rights of citizens and natural persons;
(4) This illegitimate judicial bestowal of civil and political rights upon corporations prevents the administration of laws within Donegal Township and usurps basic human and constitutional rights guaranteed to the people of Donegal Township;
(5) The illegitimate judicial designation of corporations as “persons” and the bestowal of constitutional rights upon corporations traditionally empowers corporations to sue municipal governments for adopting laws that violate corporate “rights”;
(6) The illegitimate judicial designation of corporations as “persons” requires that municipal governments recognize corporations as legitimate participants in public hearings, zoning hearing board appeals, and other governmental matters in Donegal Township;
(7) The illegitimate judicial designation of corporations as “persons” gives corporations First Amendment rights and unfettered access to elections. Those powers enable corporations to deny outright peoples’ First Amendment rights to debate and establish public policy on important issues;
(8) Buttressed by those constitutional rights, corporate wealth enables corporations – and the few who run corporations - to wield the coercive force of law to overpower citizens and communities, thus denying the peoples’ exercise of their constitutional rights;
(9) Democracy means government by the majority, with citizen rights secured to all. Only citizens of Donegal Township should be able to participate in the democratic process in Donegal Township and enjoy a republican form of government therein;
(10) Usurpation of the democratic process by corporations – and the few who run them - denies the rights of human persons to participate in their democracy in Donegal Township and enjoy a republican form of government therein;
(11) The ability of citizens of Donegal Township to adopt laws to protect the health, safety, and welfare of township residents has been denied by the wielding of constitutional “rights” by corporations. The ability of the Donegal Township Board of Supervisors to guarantee to residents a republican form of governance has been, and will be, denied by the wielding of constitutional “rights” by corporations.
Section 4. Specific Purpose. The specific purpose of this Ordinance is to guarantee to the residents of Donegal Township their right to a republican form of governance by refusing to recognize the purported constitutional rights of corporations. By doing so, the Board of Supervisors seeks to remedy current and future harms that corporations have caused - and will continue to cause - to the people of Donegal Township by the exercise of such “rights.”
Section 5. Statement of Law. Within Donegal Township, corporations shall not be “persons” under the United States or Pennsylvania Constitutions, or under the laws of the United States, Pennsylvania, or Donegal Township, and so shall not have the rights of persons under those constitutions and laws. In addition, within the Township of Donegal, no corporation shall be afforded the privileges, powers, and protections of the Contracts Clause or Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution, or of similar provisions from the Pennsylvania Constitution.
Section 6. Future Lost Profits. Within the Township of Donegal, corporate claims to “future lost profits” shall not be considered property interests under the law, and thus, shall not be recoverable by corporations seeking those damages.
Section 7. People’s Right to Self-Governance and Right of Separation. The foundation for the making and adoption of this law is the people’s fundamental and inalienable right to govern themselves, and thereby secure our rights to life, liberty, property, and pursuit of happiness. Any attempts to use county, state, or federal levels of government – judicial, legislative, or executive - to preempt, amend, alter, or overturn this Ordinance or parts of this Ordinance, or to intimidate the people of Donegal Township or their elected officials, shall require the Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township to hold public meetings that explore the adoption of other measures that expand local control and the ability of residents to protect their fundamental and inalienable right to self-government. Such consideration may include actions to separate the municipality from the other levels of government used to preempt, amend, alter, or overturn the provisions of this Ordinance or other levels of government used to intimidate the people of Donegal Township or their elected officials.
Section 8. Severability. The provisions of this Ordinance are severable. If any court of competent jurisdiction decides that any section, clause, sentence, part, or provision of this Ordinance is illegal, invalid, or unconstitutional, such decision shall not affect, impair, or invalidate any of the remaining sections, clauses, sentences, parts, or provisions of the Ordinance. The Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township hereby declares that in the event of such a decision, and the determination that the court’s ruling is legitimate, it would have enacted this Ordinance even without the section, clause, sentence, part, or provision that the court decides is illegal, invalid, or unconstitutional.
Section 9. Effective Date. This Ordinance shall take effect five days after enactment by the Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township.
Section 10. Repealer. All inconsistent provisions of prior Ordinances adopted by the Township of Donegal are hereby repealed, but only to the extent necessary to remedy the inconsistency.
ENACTED AND ORDAINED this ___ day of __________, 2007, by the Board of Supervisors of Donegal Township, Washington County.