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Albuquerque City Council Persuaded to Address Gun Owner Concerns

Albuquerque City Council Persuaded to Address Gun Owner Concerns

On Monday night, the Albuquerque City Council voted 6-3 to pass a substitute version of Council Bill O-20-4, granting the Mayor the ability to declare a public health emergency and take specified actions in response.  The original version of the proposed ordinance included this new power under the existing Civil Emergency Law.  This would have allowed the Mayor to invoke all existing powers in cases of civil emergency when a public health emergency is declared.  The most concerning of these is the ability to:

“Order the discontinuance of selling, distributing, dispensing or giving away of any firearms or ammunition of any character whatsoever, or in the alternative, order the closing of all establishments or portions thereof where arms and/or ammunition are kept for sale or distribution.” The substitute bill that was ultimately passed placed these new public health emergency powers in an entirely new section of law, ensuring this dangerous power pertaining to the citizens’ ability to acquire firearms during a time of civil unrest could not be exercised during a declared public health emergency.  To their credit, the council members acted on the concerns expressed by the gun owning community.

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