"When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. When the government fears the people, there is liberty."
To protect our God-given rights as outlined in the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution;
To hold public servants entrusted with government office accountable when their actions infringe on individual liberties;
To inform the general public about the positive and negative actions or decisions of government officials;
To unify and mobilize the public in the fight to protect our personal freedoms so that government officials listen to "we the people."
Question and Answer:
Q:Why the name CAITS Institute?
A:CAITS is an acronym for Citizens Against Incumbent Tyrannical Servants. We wanted to choose a name that highlights what we stand for. We are a group of citizens who stand against tyranny which by definition is a cruel or oppressive government. Local government officials are oppressing our natural rights of life, liberty, and property. We use the word "servants" in our name to remind everyone that government officials are public servant and they are there to serve the people. Finally, we decided to use "incumbent" in our name because we believe that more often than not it is the lifetime politician, those who have been in office for a while and that think they are untouchable, that engage in oppressive government rule.
Q: Why has CAITS gone after Mayor McArthur? A: The CAITS Institute does not have a vendetta against the mayor. However, during Dan's time as mayor, city ordinances were passed that allow code enforcement officers to conduct warrantless searches of private property, and city agents who work under Dan have repeatedly violated people's constitutional rights. It does not matter whether Dan did not know that code enforcement officers were violating citizen's 4th Amendment rights almost daily for the past 10 years, or whether he did know and chose to do nothing about it, either way, such conduct illustrates that he is not fit to be the mayor. What citizen's demand of a public officials, such as the mayor, is that the person entrusted with power honor and protect all of our natural rights as outlined in the Constitution. Any leader who fails to do so, for whatever reason, must be voted out of office.
Q:What motivated Aaron Prisbrey to help start the CAITS Institute?
A: Aaron has practiced law in St. George for 20 years. He as seen individuals get stepped on repeatedly by state government and big business. As discouraging as it may be at times, Aaron enjoys fighting for the little guy. Like most of you, he has watched as government at all levels has encroached upon our individual liberties. So when he found out that code enforcement officers in St. George were conducting illegal searches on private property, he decided to take a stand. If we are going to protect our individual liberties against the state and federal government, we better take a stand against local government engaged in much of the same wrongdoing.
Q:Isn't the city code a good thing? It keeps our city beautiful and protects our property value.
A: The CAITS Institute is not professing that we should repeal the entire city code. The fact is that every court in the land all the way up the the Supreme Court of the Unites States has held that city governments have authority to implement city ordinances. However, what they cannot do is violate the Constitution. The St. George City Code allows code enforcement officers to go onto private property without a warrant and search for potential code violations. That is a violation of the constitution, and that is what CAITS is fighting against.
Sources and Quotes Regarding Code Enforcement:
St. George City Code 1-12A-16 allows for unconstitutional searches of private property.
At a code violation hearing on September 9, 2013, code enforcement officer Jeff Cottam testified that he conducts warrantless searches of property between 100 and 200 times a year.
At code enforcement court on October 7, 2013, Judge Filter ruled that code enforcement officers violated the 4th Amendment.
"We talk to code enforcement. We manipulate or change those things as people want them done [...] there are laws we have to put in place to protect the value of our properties" --Dan McArthur at the mayor debate October 1, 2013
“I’m willing to look backwards to see if there are cases in which we inappropriately went on people’s property [...] We should consider reversing those cases and reimbursing the fines.” --John Pike as quoted in the St. George News on October 10, 2013
"I think everyone agrees that we love to have a beautiful city. But I don't want us to have a beautiful city at the expense of property rights and liberty. I don't want to see 4th Amendment violations, because we are going into people's back yards without a warrant." --Tara Dunn at the city council debate on October 1, 2013.
"I think all the codes need to be looked at; those that are antiquated need to be tossed out. I want to go over the codes. Code enforcement helps keep a pig farm from going in next door. I want to be protected from that pig farm, but I also don't want someone coming in and telling me everything I can do in my back yard." --Michele Randall a the city council debate on October 1, 2013.
"The problem with code enforcement is we have selective enforcement. And when there is favoritism, or when it appears there is favoritism, that is the problem." --Ed Baca at the city council debate on October 1, 2013.
"I am in favor of reviewing the codes that we have in place and making them different or making them so they are more user friendly in the community. I think it is going to be something that the public demands." --Joe Bowcut at the city council debate on Octobver 1, 2013.