VA - ACTION ITEM: Anti-gun bill to be heard Monday!
We need to move on this as soon as possible!
A recent newspaper story said that Senator Devolites Davis plans on
making gun control a *centerpiece* of her reelection bid later this
Her anti-gun bill, SB 827, claims to close a non-existent "gun show loophole."
Dealers at gun shows are already required to get approval from the
State Police for all firearms sales. This bill is really a
private-sale gun registration scheme for gun shows.
On top of that, it is a solution to a non-existent problem. A U.S.
Department of Justice study showed that only seven-tenths of
one-percent of guns used in crimes come from gun shows!
In a recent newspaper interview, Senator Devolites Davis
mischaracterized her bill by saying that it would prevent lawsuits
similar to those that New York City Mayor Bloomberg is bringing
against some Virginia Gun dealers. But it does nothing of the sort.
Click on the link below to send a message to the entire Senate Courts
of Justice Committee asking them to oppose the bill:
Here is the link to the puff-piece story about Senator Devolites
Davis making gun control a centerpiece of her campaign (November
can't get here quickly enough for me, how about you?):
End of the Gun Show Loophole?
Devolites Davis wants to close "gun show loophole," introduces about
30 other bills.
By Ari Cetron, Connection Newspapers
January 11, 2007
An issue likely to be a centerpiece of Sen. Jeannemarie Devolites
Davis' (R-34) re-election bid, gun control, is also one of her top
pieces of legislation this year.
Under current law, most dealers must perform a background check on
prospective buyers before selling a weapon. Small dealers, or more
often individuals, are exempt from this provision.
The exemption is commonly called the "gun show loophole" since many
of these private sales are made in these venues. Devolites Davis is
proposing legislation this year which will close the so-called
While it might be able to pass through the state senate, gun control
bills face an uphill battle in the House of Delegates, where the
Committee on Militia, Police and Public Safety routinely kills gun
So, Devolites Davis has added a provision to sweeten the deal.
"Anyone that has a background check when they sell will be immune
from prosecution," she said. The issues, she said, came to her
attention because three Virginia gun stores are being sued by the
State of New York because they sold guns which were later used in a
crime. The stores performed the necessary checks, she said.
She hopes that the prosecution immunity, similar to what is done in
California, will make the bill attractive enough to some of the more
pro-gun members of the Assembly.
DEVOLITES DAVIS plans to bring back a few other bills which have
failed in the past. Last year, she introduced legislation which she
hopes would make the land use process more transparent.
Under current law, local elected officials must disclose if they have
received $100 or more in campaign contributions, in the past 12
months from someone who is seeking a rezoning of their land.
Devolites Davis would extend this disclosure to the Plan Amendment phase.
Local governments have a difficult time denying a rezoning request if
it complies with the Comprehensive Plan. For this reason, she thinks
it is important to know where the money is at the planning stage.
The bill died in committee in the Senate last year, but she made a
change which she thinks will give it a better chance to succeed this
year. "It's coming back because I think the transparency is
important," she said.
She will also re-introduce a bill mandating that electronic voting
machines also have a paper printout, or that localities use an
Continuing her usual work on technology issues, she hopes to
institute protections which will protect state computers from being
accessed by unauthorized people, and a separate bill setting up
regulations for electronic signatures.
She also plans to bring back another bill which has failed in the
past, red light cameras. The Virginia General Assembly had allowed
some localities, including Fairfax County, the City of Fairfax and
the Town of Vienna, to use cameras to catch red-light violators.
The enabling legislation expired on June 30, 2004 despite the efforts
of local representatives to continue its use. While the cameras are
still up in many locations, they may no longer be used to ticket
Governments who use the technology typically praise its use. It helps
reduce red light violations at intersections where the cameras are
installed and reduces the number of "T-bone" collisions.
Opponents noted that it increased the number of rear-end collisions,
and some legislators feared that the cameras would be an invasion of
privacy. The various attempts to bring the bill back were routinely
killed by the House Committee on Militia, Police and Public Safety.
However, the same technology is now proposed for use to help track
vehicles using toll lanes on roads built in public-private
partnerships. Many who had been opposed to red-light cameras may now
be more open to them, Devolites Davis said. "I understand there is a
different attitude in the house," she said.