Gun lobby pursues extreme legislation to go after Pennsylvania cities

Crawford County Pennsylvania Courthouse

After the NRA helped defeat state legislation that would have required Pennsylvania gun owners to report lost or stolen firearms to law enforcement, dozens of cities statewide enacted the requirement themselves. The gun lobby responded by suing cities that had enacted the measure. When those suits failed, they began pushing bills through the legislature that would make it easier to sue local governments for enacting ordinances such as the lost or stolen reporting requirement.

One such bill has already passed the State Senate and would require cities to pay attorneys’ fees, expert witness fees, court costs and damages if a plaintiff succeeds in a lawsuit. Cities would be required to pay even if the city repealed the ordinance while the lawsuit was still pending. Another bill would require cities to pay triple the damages, fees and costs if a plaintiff were to prevail in court.

One Pennsylvania mayor whose city requires reporting of lost or stolen firearms predicted that if the measure is enacted into law, his city will “spend money fighting frivolous litigation instead of hiring police officers.” Another Pennsylvania mayor of a city with the reporting requirement said, “All we’re trying to do is protect our citizens. We were kind of shocked. The legislation is absolutely insane.”

Want to see more Extremism in Action? You can find them here.

We’re Almost There! Our Priority Bill to Stop Illegal Gun Trafficking is on Governor Brown’s Desk

Your calls and emails paid off last week: the California Legislature heard you and passed our bill to curb illegal gun trafficking. But the work isn’t over yet.

We have been working all year on SB 1366, which would give law enforcement an important tool to fight the flow of illegal guns in California. The bill would require gun owners to report lost and stolen guns to the police — guns that are often trafficked into the hands of criminals.

This bill is now on Governor Brown’s desk and just one step away from becoming law.
We need your help NOW for this final, critical push.

Please call Governor Brown TODAY at (916) 445-2841 and tell him:

“I support SB 1366 because it gives law enforcement
what they need to fight gun trafficking!”

If the line is busy, you can click here to e-mail the governor with your message.
Be sure to select “SB01366\Firearms: lost or stolen: reports” under “Please Choose Your Subject” and select “Pro” for your position when prompted.

California is close to enacting this important bill into law. Your voice can help keep guns out of the wrong hands in our state.

Let’s ensure that Governor Brown makes the right decision to protect our communities.
Call or email him right now.

We have a deep amount of research on this topic. For more, read about the benefits of lost and stolen firearm reporting.

The Law Center’s Priority Bill Advances in California Assembly

On Tuesday, June 12, 2012, a Law Center co-sponsored bill to require the reporting of lost or stolen firearms in California passed the Assembly Public Safety Committee in a 4-2 vote.  SB 1366 (DeSaulnier) is a critical  measure to help fight the illegal trafficking of crime guns and prevent gun violence in our communities.  The bill is co-sponsored by Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca and the California Chapters of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, and is supported by the California Police Chiefs Association, the California State Sheriffs’ Association, and mayors and gun violence prevention groups statewide.

Find out more about this important issue with Lost & Stolen Reporting: Why SB 1366 Matters.  SB 1366 now proceeds to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

Lost & Stolen Reporting Bill Passes the California Senate

Yesterday, our priority bill to combat illegal gun trafficking and keep guns out of the wrong hands passed the California State Senate by a vote of 23-14.  Co-sponsored by the Law Center, SB 1366 (DeSaulnier) would require gun owners to alert local law enforcement when their firearms are lost or stolen, providing law enforcement with a much-needed tool to curb gun trafficking. SB 1366 now proceeds to the Assembly. Continue reading

Crucial Gun Trafficking Bill Advances to CA Senate Floor

Great news! Early next week, we expect the California State Senate to vote on a critical bill that will help stop illegal gun trafficking and keep guns out of the wrong hands.  

Now we need your help to tell the Senate how important this measure is! 

Co-sponsored by LCAV, SB 1366 (DeSaulnier) would require gun owners to alert local law enforcement when their firearms are lost or stolen, providing law enforcement with a much-needed tool to curb gun trafficking.

Without a reporting law in place, individuals whose guns are recovered at crime scenes can falsely claim that their weapons innocently disappeared in order to hide their involvement in criminal activity.

Please call your State Senator TODAY and tell him or her,  

“I support SB 1366 to fight gun trafficking!”.

You can find your State Senator and the number to call by following this link. Continue reading

Important Victory in California: SB 1366 Passed California State Senate’s Public Safety Commission

The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence is pleased to report that the California State Senate has taken a critical step to help stop illegal gun trafficking and keep guns out of the wrong hands.

The Law Center co-sponsored bill SB 1366 (DeSaulnier) was passed by the California State Senate’s Public Safety Committee in a hearing earlier today. SB 1366 would require gun owners to alert local law enforcement within 48 hours when their firearms are lost or stolen.

Requiring the reporting of lost or stolen guns will provide law enforcement with a critical tool to curb illegal gun trafficking. Without a reporting law in place, individuals whose guns are recovered at crime scenes can falsely claim that their weapons innocently disappeared in order to hide their involvement in criminal activity.

Continue reading

Lost & Stolen Reporting: Why SB 1366 Matters

Seven states, the District of Columbia, and nine cities in California currently require firearm owners to report to law enforcement when their firearms are lost or stolen. The State of California does not.

Currently, firearms dealers and manufacturers must report any lost or stolen firearms within 48 hours, and local law enforcement must enter reports of lost or stolen firearms into the state’s Automated Property System database. However, firearm owners whose guns are lost or stolen are not required to do anything. As a result, law enforcement efforts to investigate gun crimes and disarm dangerous criminals are significantly hindered.

The public overwhelmingly supports laws requiring the reporting of lost or stolen firearms. A nationwide poll in 2011 found that 94% of Americans surveyed, including 94% of gun owners, favor laws to require the reporting of lost or stolen firearms.

In California, 2,972 residents died from firearm related injuries in 2009, and 3,545 others were treated for non-fatal gunshot wounds. Of the 1,811 Californians murdered in 2010, 1,257, or 69%, were killed with firearms. Continue reading

Success Story: California City Adopts Important Regulations to Fight Violence and Gun Trafficking

WHAT HAPPENED?
Campbell, California, a city with the highest crime rate in the county in which it is located, recently sought ways to help law enforcement fight gun violence and gun trafficking in the community.  With the Law Center’s help, the City pursued two regulatory approaches:

1) requiring firearms dealers and ammunition sellers to obtain a local license and fulfill other basic safety requirements; and,

2) requiring firearms owners to report the loss or theft of a firearm to local law enforcement.

Law enforcement supported these measures and, despite the threat of lawsuits from the gun lobby, the City Council adopted them in September 2011.

HOW SAFETY WINS
Law enforcement officers now have a tool to ensure that firearms dealers and ammunition sellers in the city are complying with relevant laws. Campbell now requires a firearm owner to report the loss or theft of a firearm he or she possesses or owns to law enforcement.  These types of laws make gun owners more accountable for their weapons and help law enforcement stop gun trafficking.  A reporting requirement makes it more difficult for a gun trafficker to whom a crime gun has been traced to falsely claim the gun was lost or stolen in order to hide involvement in a crime. Reporting laws also help disarm persons who are ineligible to possess firearms by deterring a person who has fallen into a prohibited category from falsely claiming he or she no longer has the gun because it was lost or stolen.  In addition, these laws help law enforcement return lost or stolen firearms to their law abiding owners.

The Law Center Releases One-of-a-Kind Book of Model Laws to Fight Gun Violence

The Law Center is pleased to announce our latest publication, Model Laws for a Safer America: Seven Regulations to Promote Responsible Gun Ownership and Sales. The book of model laws can be used by activists and elected officials nationwide seeking to close dangerous loopholes in our federal regulatory system. The publication provides sample statutory language for state and local laws to:

  • Require background checks on all gun purchasers;
  • Require the licensing of firearm owners;
  • Require registration of firearms;
  • Regulate firearms dealers and ammunition sellers;
  • Require the reporting of lost or stolen firearms;
  • Impose a waiting period before the sale of a firearm; and
  • Limit firearm purchases to one per person every 90 days.

Our in-depth knowledge of state and local gun laws, together with our legislative drafting experience, make us uniquely qualified to help community leaders develop policies to address America’s gun violence epidemic. Each of the model laws contains detailed legislative findings showing the need for, and benefits of the law. The publication also includes a discussion of common opposition arguments and legal issues.

We are available to provide assistance to any jurisdiction seeking to tailor a model law to its particular needs.