Thomas introduces package of gun reform bills

Joins call for action to pass commonsense gun laws

HARRISBURG, March 19 – In the wake of the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Fla., and the threats of violence in schools across Pennsylvania, state Rep. W. Curtis Thomas introduced a package of gun safety reform bills, including a bill that he first proposed years ago to help prevent similar acts of violence.

The proposed bills are:

  • H.B. 2120 – Would prohibit people younger than 21 from purchasing or be in receipt of a transfer of a semiautomatic weapon.
  • H.B. 2144 – Would prevent people with mental illness from receiving a gun permit and/or purchasing firearms.
  • H.B. 2145 – Would prohibit the possession, sale or manufacture of large capacity firearm magazines. The bill also would increase the penalties for anyone in possession of a firearm with a large capacity magazine while involved in an act of violence, including sexual assaults.
  • H.B. 2146 – Would call for the creation of an advisory committee to study the safety and security of public schools throughout the commonwealth. This committee would be tasked with the creation of a best practices strategy to secure the facility and management of the schools.

Thomas said H.B. 2144, which he first introduced in 2012, is among several pieces of legislation being touted by the PA SAFE Caucus, a bipartisan group of state lawmakers to which I belong who advocate for firearm safety.

“No sooner did I introduce this package of bills that H.B. 2120 already was referred to the House Judiciary Committee. This shows how quickly legislation on gun safety reform needs to move in the General Assembly,” Thomas said. “We can no longer stand on the sidelines while our young people across the country are dying and scared to go to school. Enough is enough.”

Thomas added the House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a special set of hearings on gun safety and reform during the week of April 9. Many of the bills sponsored by the PA SAFE Caucus will be discussed.

“I urge members of the House Judiciary Committee to not just provide lip service on those bills. They must vote them out of committee and bring them to the House for action,” Thomas said. “It’s time to pass commonsense gun laws that would save lives not only in Philadelphia, but across the commonwealth. We must act now.”