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Connecticut: Weston Board of Selectmen Postpones Gun Ban—Shifts Focus to Mandatory Storage

Friday, January 18, 2013

On Thursday, January 17, over two hundred concerned citizens packed into the Weston Middle School cafeteria to voice their opinions on the Town of Weston’s proposed gun ban ordinance.  After a lengthy discussion on constitutional and legal concerns, the Board of Selectmen concluded that it would be best to postpone any immediate action to restrict firearms and defer to the state and federal level for action.

The Town Board acknowledged issues with much of the controversial language proposed in their initial draft including:

  • Inhibiting your inherent right to self-defense by removing the ability to legally protect yourself and your loved ones.
  • Banning any “firearm or other weapon” from Weston unless you obtained a permit to possess these lawful items and registered them with the town chief of police.  The ordinance’s definition of “other weapon” was so broad it included slingshots, crossbows, and air guns!
  • Subjecting residents to a $500 fine for failing to comply with this over-reaching ordinance.

However, the Selectmen will continue to push a mandatory storage requirement for all firearms in the town.  The language in their draft states that residents must keep their firearms “in a securely locked box constructed of steel or similar material.”

This is another micro-managing attempt by the Town Board to limit the rights of law-abiding citizens.  Everyone knows that firearms must be stored safety, particularly when housed with children, but it is NOT the Board’s business or role to dictate how people store things in their homes.

Furthermore, this proposal raises serious concerns that include:

-          Could the Board be held criminally liable if an individual is unable to properly defend his home because it was mandated his firearms must be stored away and not accessible for self-defense?

-          Will the government conduct checks on law-abiding citizens to ensure enforcement?

-          If individuals currently store their firearms in locked wooden boxes, will Weston provide vouchers so they can purchase a locked box made of steel or similar material?

While the NRA appreciates the Board’s acknowledgement of their constituents’ constitutional concerns with their drafted ordinance, this fight is not over.  The Town Board is committed to further discussions, and will push ahead to impose mandatory storage.  The Weston Board of Selectmen will revisit the issue at their next meeting on Thursday, February 7.

Please stay turned to www.nraila.org/westongunban for updates on this evolving ordinance.

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