Lawmakers reserve right to regulate firearms for state, not cities
SALT LAKE CITY — A bill making its way through the Utah Legislature would reserve the right to regulate firearms for the state, not cities, towns or counties.
Sen. Chris Wilson, R-Logan, sponsored S.B. 115, which clarifies that only the state holds the authority to regulate firearms in Utah.
According to Wilson, that was already the case, but it hasn’t always been followed.
“We are committed to protecting the 2nd Amendment rights, defined in the U.S. Constitution by our Founding Fathers,” he said. “In recent years, local governments have attempted to exploit loopholes in state law to regulate firearms at conventions.”
In 2019, Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson announced a plan to require background checks at gun shows in county-owned buildings. This bill would not allow her to make rules like that one.
The bill passed out of the Senate along party lines. Sen. Derek Kitchen, D-Salt Lake City, voted against it.
“I think that this is a pretty clear overreach from the state,” Kitchen said.
It heads to the House of Representatives for consideration next.
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