Current firearm bills unlikely to move in NC House committee

Local Illinois advocates speaks out about gun violence
Local Illinois advocates speaks out about gun violence
Updated: Aug. 7, 2019 at 2:47 PM EDT
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RALEIGH, N.C. (WECT) - Calls to move gun reform bills through North Carolina’s House of Representatives committee will apparently not bring the action supporters want to see. Rep. Ted Davis (R-New Hanover), the Senior Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee where six firearm-related bills presently reside, is calling for more comprehensive solutions following the recent deadly shootings in Ohio, Texas and California.

“Rather than dealing with numerous gun Bills that might offer a partial solution, we need comprehensive reform that reviews and addresses the status of our current mental health services, social and criminal justice reforms, and existing gun laws,” Rep. Davis wrote in a newsletter emailed Wednesday from his legislative office. “Addressing one symptom while not addressing all the causes of this madness will do little to advert (sic) a future tragedy.”

Governor Roy Cooper and several House democrats this week have specifically called for action on two bills referred to the Judiciary Committee. Several democrats filed a discharge petition on Tuesday, attempting to bring HB86, the Gun Violence Prevention Act, up for a vote on the House floor. The second bill Gov. Cooper pushed lawmakers to consider, HB454, is similar to so-called “red flag laws” passed by more than a dozen states. It allows a court to decide whether weapons should be removed from an owner deemed to be dangerous to themselves or others.

A list of bills under the House Judiciary Committee’s website finds one other firearm-related bill filed by democrats, H456. Republican members have filed three bills dealing with gun issues, HB61, HB498 and HB499. None have received hearings since being referred to the committee. When asked if any of the bills will receive hearings, Rep. Davis said not as they presently stand.

“I am willing to hear a comprehensive bill that truly addresses the prevention of gun violence,” he responded.

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