Imagine the City of New Orleans having the statutory authority to pass any law they wanted governing the sale, purchase, possession, ownership, transfer, transportation, license, or registration of firearms and ammunition. Plain and simple, that’s what House Bill 959, sponsored by state Representative John Bagneris (D-New Orleans), would allow. On Tuesday, May 3, at 9:30 a.m., in Committee Room 6 of the State Capitol, the House Administration of Criminal Justice Committee will hold a public hearing and vote on HB 959. *The committee normally meets on Wednesdays, so make a note of the hearing date *
The only reason city officials haven’t restricted our rights in these areas already is because Louisiana Revised Statutes Section 40:1796(A) prohibits municipalities and parishes from enacting ordinances and regulations more restrictive than state law. This is known as Louisiana’s firearms preemption law and it ensures that law-abiding gun owners and sportsmen aren’t forced to navigate a patchwork of conflicting and confusing local restrictions on Second Amendment rights across the state.
This bill doesn’t only impact New Orleans/Orleans Parish residents, it affects anyone who travels to the city on business or for personal reasons. It also sets a precedent for any municipality, parish or governing authority of another political subdivision – including the one you live in – to come to the Legislature and ask for the same carve-out so that they can set about restricting your rights.
It is critical that you contact the members of the House Administration of Criminal Justice Committee and urge them to OPPOSE HB 959. Please also make plans to attend Tuesday’s hearing and sign up to speak against, or register your opposition to, HB 959 by filling out a RED card.