Chapter 9.40


9.40.010    Definitions.

9.40.020    Underage gatherings prohibited.

9.40.030    Exemptions.

9.40.040    Civil penalty.

9.40.050    Severability.

9.40.010 Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:

A. “Alcoholic beverage” shall mean alcohol, spirits, liquor, wine, beer, and every liquid or solid containing alcohol, spirits, wine, or beer that contains one-half of one percent or more of alcohol by volume; and is fit for beverage purposes either alone or when diluted, mixed, or combined with other substances.

B. “Property” shall mean private property, rented residential premises, or private rented commercial spaces; including but not limited to a home, yard, garage, apartment, condominium, hotel or motel room, or other dwelling unit, or a hall or meeting room, whether occupied on a temporary or permanent basis, whether occupied as a dwelling, party or other social function, and whether owned, leased, rented, or used with or without compensation.

C. “Responsible person” includes:

1. The person(s) who owns, rents, leases (lessee), or otherwise has right to control property at which an underage gathering takes place;

2. The person(s) in immediate control of property at which an underage gathering takes place; or

3. The person(s) who organizes, supervises, sponsors, conducts, allows, controls, or controls access to the underage gathering.

If the property is rented or leased, the landlord or lessor is not subject to the provisions of this chapter unless such person is a responsible person within the category of persons described under subsection (C)(2) or (3) of this definition.

D. “Underage gathering” means a party or gathering of three or more persons at a property at which alcoholic beverages are being consumed or possessed by one or more underage persons or one or more underage persons are exhibiting effects of consuming alcoholic beverages.

E. “Underage person” shall mean any person under 21 years of age. (Ord. 2012-21 § 2, 2012).

9.40.020 Underage gatherings prohibited.

A. An underage gathering constitutes a public nuisance, is an immediate threat to public health and safety, and is prohibited.

B. As a public nuisance, the underage gathering may be summarily abated by law enforcement by all reasonable means, singularly or in combination, including, but not limited to:

1. Issuance of a notice of civil infraction, as authorized by Chapter 7.80 RCW, and subject to a monetary penalty as set forth in this chapter;

2. Public nuisance abatement procedures as set forth in Chapter 8.08 EMC; and

3. Any other remedy provided by law. (Ord. 2012-21 § 3, 2012).

9.40.030 Exemptions.

A. This chapter shall not apply to any location or place that is regulated by a permit or license issued by the Washington State Liquor Control Board.

B. This chapter shall not apply to underage gatherings where the only underage persons consuming alcoholic beverages are being closely supervised in person by their parent or guardian while such underage person is consuming the alcoholic beverages or exhibiting the effects of consuming alcoholic beverages.

C. This chapter does not apply to alcoholic beverages given for medicinal purposes to an underage person by a parent, guardian, physician, or dentist.

D. This chapter does not apply to alcoholic beverages given to an underage person when such alcoholic beverage is being used in connection with religious services and the amount consumed is the minimal amount necessary for the religious service. (Ord. 2012-21 § 4, 2012).

9.40.040 Civil penalty.

Upon the occurrence of an underage gathering that constitutes a public nuisance, the responsible person or persons shall be deemed to have committed a class 1 civil infraction and shall be subject to a fine of $250.00 plus statutory assessments. Upon identification of an underage gathering constituting a public nuisance, a notice of infraction may be issued to the responsible person or persons in accordance with Chapter 7.80 RCW and EMC 1.12.020. (Ord. 2012-21 § 5, 2012).

9.40.050 Severability.

Should any section, paragraph, sentence, clause or phrase of this chapter, or its application to any person or circumstance, be declared unconstitutional or otherwise invalid for any reason, or should any portion of this chapter be preempted by state or federal law or regulation, such decision or preemption shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this chapter or its application to other persons or circumstances. (Ord. 2012-21 § 6, 2012).