California’s Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown acted on five gun control measures this week, rejecting a pair that would expand gun laws while signing others.
Among some 70 bills processed by the outgoing governor on Wednesday was rejecting a measure paving the way for individuals to “86” their own gun rights as well as one to increase the pool of those who can seek gun violence restraining orders to seize firearms from those thought to be at risk.
AB 1927, vetoed by Brown, aimed to study crafting a law to allow individuals to voluntarily jettison their own gun rights. A similar law was enacted in Washington earlier this year, aimed at curbing suicides.
The measure was unanimously approved in both the state Senate and Assembly. Introduced by Assemblymember Rob Bonta, a San Francisco Democrat, with strong support from gun control groups, it was painted as a measure to protect people from themselves by scrapping their gun rights.
“While this is an interesting area of inquiry, I do not believe that we need to mandate additional study of this type,” said Brown in his message to lawmakers, going on to point out that information on “self-exclusion from gun purchases can be obtained through existing means.”
The second bill rejected by Brown, AB 2888, would expand who can file for one of California’s Gun Violence Restraining Orders, adding coworkers, employers, and school employees to the list that currently includes family members and police. Such orders, largely pioneered by the state, have been derided as “turn in your neighbor” laws as they allow for temporary gun seizures with the accused only able to appear in court after the fact in many cases. Brown thought the proposal went too far.
“All of the persons named in this bill can seek a gun violence restraining order today under existing law by simply working through law enforcement or the immediate family of the concerning individual,” he said. “I think law enforcement professionals and those closest to a family member are best situated to make these especially consequential decisions.”
The three gun control bills signed by Brown were co-sponsored by national groups such as the Brady Campaign, Moms Demand Action, and Everytown.
AB 2103 adds more red tape to those applying for concealed carry permits in the state, making a firearms safety course of at least eight hours mandatory before they could be issued a license. Some jurisdictions have higher requirements than what is being proposed, but gun control advocates who support the measure say a statewide mandate for more training is needed. Gun rights advocates say the move is uncalled for and duplicative. Proponents of the measure said it is all about safety.
“With my bill now state law, we will know those who receive a CCW permit have been appropriately trained. This makes our communities safer,” said AB 2103’s sponsor, Assemblymember Todd Gloria, D-San Diego.
A second bill greenlighted by Brown, SB 746, requires new California residents to apply for a unique serial number within 60 days of their arrival for any firearm they already possess that does not already have such a number. It also allows those who have an outstanding warrant to transfer their guns and ammunition to a licensed firearms dealer.
Besides the two vetoes, gun rights advocates had a small ray of light when Brown earlier this month approved a pro-hunting bill, AB 2151, designed to make hunting more affordable for youths by reducing the cost of big game tags.
Several other gun bills remain in Brown’s desk including proposals to ban gun shows at some state venues, raise the minimum age on gun sales to 21 and ration firearms to one purchase every 30 days.