A08334 Summary:

COSPNSRHevesi, Bichotte Hermelyn, Eichenstein, Lavine, Braunstein, Dinowitz, Pheffer Amato, Williams, Burke, Gunther, Eachus, Cunningham, Stirpe, Jones, Colton, Paulin, Santabarbara, Pretlow, Stern, Rozic, Shimsky, Angelino, Benedetto, Buttenschon, Thiele, Rivera, Zebrowski, Fall, Blumencranz, Flood
Add §240.22, Pen L
Enacts the "dialogue and decorum act" which establishes the crime of disruption or disturbance of a lawful assembly; makes such crime a class A misdemeanor.
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A08334 Actions:

12/13/2023referred to codes
01/03/2024referred to codes
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A08334 Committee Votes:

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A08334 Floor Votes:

There are no votes for this bill in this legislative session.
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A08334 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A8334                Revised 12/18/2023
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the penal law, in relation to establishing the crime of disruption or disturbance of a lawful assembly   PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: The bill guarantees that the right to freedom of speech and assembly will not be denied by those intent on silencing speech they disagree with.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 1 Titles this law the "dialogue and decorum act." Section 2 (1)Adds section 240.22 to the penal code which outlaws the willful disturbance of a lawful assembly (2)defines "willfully disturbs" (3)Establishes that disregard of a moderators call to order would also qualify as willful disturbance. Section 3 Effective Date   JUSTIFICATION: The First Amendment of the United States Constitution guarantees the right to free assembly and speech. Recently, both on college campuses and other public spaces we are seeing the suppression of ideas and view- points in the form of interrupting and drowning out speeches and assem- blies. Every person has the right to speak on all subjects, but remains responsible for misconduct which is an abuse of that right under both the United States and New York State Constitutions. This bill, modeled after California Penal Code § 403, aims to uphold the First Amendment and bring decorum back to New York, ensuring people can exercise their rights without fear of intimidation or unwarranted interference, by holding accountable those who would use their speech to suppress the speech of others.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
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A08334 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2023-2024 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                    December 13, 2023
        Introduced by M. of A. BERGER -- read once and referred to the Committee
          on Codes
        AN  ACT to amend the penal law, in relation to establishing the crime of
          disruption or disturbance of a lawful assembly
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:

     1    Section  1.  This act shall be known and may be cited as the "dialogue
     2  and decorum act".
     3    § 2. The penal law is amended by adding a new section 240.22  to  read
     4  as follows:
     5  § 240.22 Disruption or disturbance of a lawful assembly.
     6    1.  A person is guilty of disruption or disturbance of a lawful assem-
     7  bly when he or she, without authority  of  law,  willfully  disturbs  or
     8  breaks up any assembly or meeting that is not unlawful in its character.
     9    2.  For  purposes  of this section, the following terms shall have the
    10  following meanings:
    11    (a) "Willfully disturbs" shall mean:
    12    (i) the conduct substantially impairs the ability to conduct a  lawful
    13  meeting or assembly;
    14    (ii)  the  conduct  disrupting  the meeting or assembly is intended to
    15  cause a disruption; and
    16    (iii) the conduct is in violation of the implicit customs or usage  of
    17  the  specific kind of meeting or assembly, or the explicit rules govern-
    18  ing the meeting or assembly, where the disrupting party knew or  reason-
    19  ably should have known such conduct was in violation.
    20    (b)  "Lawful  assembly"  shall mean a group of two or more individuals
    21  who legally reserve a space or area with an  institution  or  a  munici-
    22  pality  by paying a fee or filing an application, and who use such space
    23  or area to peacefully assemble for any purpose not expressly  prohibited
    24  by law.

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 8334                             2
     1    3.  Disregard of a moderator's call to order or a determination that a
     2  person is in violation of the rules of an assembly or meeting  shall  be
     3  proof of an impermissible intent to disrupt.
     4    Disruption  or disturbance of a lawful assembly is a class A misdemea-
     5  nor.
     6    § 3. This act shall take effect immediately.
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