As previously reported, Charleston Mayor Danny Jones has been actively opposing important firearms preemption legislation throughout this year’s legislative session. There are now reports that he is pressuring Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (D) to veto Senate Bill 435.
If signed into law, SB 435 would require Charleston and any other city participating in and benefitting from the underlying bill's Home Rule program that currently has and enforces local gun control ordinances to be consistent and uniform with the rest of the state. For those localities that take advantage of the Home Rule authority delegated by the state legislature, SB 435 would effectively eliminate municipal gun control restrictions such as the three-day waiting period and gun rationing for handgun purchases in Charleston.
Despite its overwhelming passage in both legislative chambers, Mayor Danny Jones continues to spread misleading rhetoric in opposition to this much-needed legislation.
Mayor Jones not only continues to actively oppose pro-gun reform in the state capitol, but thanks to state legislators like Delegate Mark Hunt (D-36), hard hitting facts from the FBI show that draconian laws currently on the books in Charleston have done nothing to curb violence.
SB 435 is currently awaiting the signature of Governor Tomblin. Please e-mail Governor Tomblin and respectfully urge him to sign SB 435 into law, despite the misguided pressure he is receiving from Charleston’s Mayor. Governor Tomblin can be reached by e-mail by clicking here.
The following pro-gun bills are also awaiting Governor Tomblin’s approval and signature:
House Bill 2431, sponsored by Delegate Rupie Phillips (D-24), amends the application process for a Concealed Pistol/Revolver Permit, making West Virginia permit holders eligible for exemption from the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) for firearm purchases. Such carry permit holders have already cleared a background check, and HB 2431 will conform state law to federal law and lead to greater reciprocity for permit holders throughout the United States.
House Bill 2471, sponsored by state House Speaker Rick Thompson (D-19), prohibits the restriction of the lawful use, carrying, transfer, transportation, storage or display of a firearm or ammunition during any declared state of emergency. HB 2471 would protect law-abiding citizens in West Virginia from a violation of their constitutional rights reminiscent of what occurred in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, where law-abiding citizens were stripped of their lawfully owned firearms by overzealous government officials leaving them defenseless and unable to protect their families and property.
Senate Bill 369, sponsored by state Senate Majority Leader John Unger (D-16), increases the number of states that recognize a West Virginia Concealed Pistol/Revolver Permit and allows residents of another state, who hold a valid out-of-state permit or license, to carry in West Virginia.