Burns pounds away at gun control attempts
Supports bill to deter local governments from trying to regulate guns
HARRISBURG, June 4 – Seeking to beat back local government attempts to regulate firearms, state Rep. Frank Burns, D-Cambria, has thrown his weight behind a Republican-sponsored bill designed to deter such activity.
Burns, who proudly serves as the Democratic chairman of the legislature’s Second Amendment Caucus, said he sees the recent moves taken by some cities and municipalities as backdoor attempts at gun control that infringe on the rights of law-abiding Pennsylvanians.
“Despite a specific provision in our state’s Crimes Code that bans local regulation of firearms, time and time again, we’ve seen local governments continue their attempts to take away responsible gun owners’ rights,” Burns said. “We just saw it happen in Pittsburgh recently, and I found the move insulting and an outright attack on legal firearms ownership.”
Burns said the bill he supports would require that any party that successfully challenges the legality of such an ordinance would be able to collect reasonable attorney’s fees and related costs. Burns added that the bill also includes a requirement to give the municipality 60 days’ written notice to voluntarily repeal the ordinance, prior to a legal challenge being filed.
“These local laws fly in the face of existing law and our constitution, which I took an oath to defend – and which protects the rights of all Pennsylvanians to defend themselves and bear arms,” Burns said. “I don’t care if a bill to send the right message comes from a Democrat, a Republican, or a man on the moon. If it seeks to do the right thing, I’ll support it.”
House Bill 1066, whose primary sponsor is state Rep. Mark Keller, R-Perry/Cumberland, is currently under consideration in the House Judiciary Committee.