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Chester County Press

Township signs ordinance in support of efforts to reduce gun violence

04/10/2018 12:02PM ● By Richard Gaw
By Richard L. Gaw

Staff Writer

By a 3-0 vote, the Kennett Township Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution at their April 4 meeting that lends the township's voice in urging state and federal lawmakers to enact laws to reduce gun violence in the United States.

Resolution No. 2018-11 spells out eight initiatives: To prevent known and suspected terrorists, those convicted of hate crimes and those with a history of domestic abuse from buying guns; to encourage lawmakers to fund research into the study of the causes of gun violence, and to support gun safety technology; to require trigger locks on guns in homes with children; to ban access to assault-style weapons; to reduce the number of cartridges allowed in a clip or a gun's magazine; to restrict those who are mentally ill from owning a gun; to ensure background checks on all sales, including those purchased online or at gun shows; and to preserve the provisions of the Pennsylvania Instant Check System, which provides instant access to background records.

The resolution was introduced to the township by Anton Andrew, a Kennett Township attorney who recently announced his intention to seek election to the Pennsylvania State House of Representatives in the 160th District, a seat currently occupied by Republican incumbent Stephen Barrar, who has held the office for the past 21 years.

The resolution signed by Kennett Township generously overlaps one of the key platforms of Andrews' campaign, which is to seek methods of what he calls “common sense” gun regulations, as spelled out on his website.

“We are all concerned about the continued increase in gun violence in our nation,” Andrews' website reads. “What many may not realize is that many gun regulations are determined in Harrisburg. Gun violence is a complex issue and there is no one solution. However, I believe we must come together to pass common sense regulations in areas where there is clear agreement as to a sensible path forward.”

Among his initiatives to reduce gun violence, Andrews is calling for pre-purchase background checks before every gun purchase.

“Currently, in Pennsylvania, a resident of any age can purchase a rifle, including a semi-automatic rifle, through a private purchase with no background check,” Andrews wrote. “I am in favor of closing this loophole. Surveys show over 80 percent of Americans, including gun owners, agree. It is critical that our current representative support a key position held by so many of our citizens.”

Another component of Andrews' campaign is to demand a ban on civilian purchase or possession of rapid-firing, semi-automatic assault weapons, similar to those that have been used at some of the nation's most violent mass shootings, including the most recent in Parkland, Florida.

“After the expiration of the federal ban on assault weapons in 2004 and the failure to renew it by Congress, it now falls upon the states to pass sensible laws to prohibit these deadly weapons,” Andrews wrote. “I will take the leadership to find common sense solutions and pass legislation to provide sensible regulations.”

To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email [email protected].