Governor Tom Wolf joined Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, city leaders and advocates in announcing a package of commonsense gun safety measures that will be introduced to Pittsburgh City Council Tuesday.
The bills include an assault weapons ban; an accessories, ammunition and modification ban; and an adoption of Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs). Copies are available here of the legislation on assault weapons, accessories/modifications, and ERPOs.
“I wanted to be here as a show of solidarity with those here and those across our commonwealth, all calling out for safer communities,” Gov. Wolf said. “Earlier this year, I signed the first major gun safety bill in decades in Pennsylvania. It was long overdue, but we still have a lot of work to do.”
Gov. Wolf signed the domestic violence gun safety bill in October. The law includes additional safeguards to help protect victims of domestic violence, including prohibiting abusers with a final protection from abuse (PFA) order from possessing firearms and requiring them to turn in their guns to a law enforcement agency immediately while the order is in effect; eliminates the concerns about an abuser giving a gun to a family member or friend; requires a PFA to be served by the sheriff or duly authorized deputy sheriff; and allows for the time that an abuser is incarcerated not to be counted for the 90 days of a temporary PFA.
Gov. Wolf also announced the allocation of more than $1.5 million in funding to eight Pennsylvania municipalities for the 2018 Gun Violence Reduction Initiative. The funding was awarded through a competitive solicitation as part of a Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency program to provide municipalities with funds to implement strategies resulting in the reduction of gun violence in communities.
He announced in October that $1 million had been awarded to Pennsylvania for over 70 schools to implement violence prevention programs through the Sandy Hook Promise, which was created after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012.
And he created, with Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, a School Safety Task Force that issued a report with recommendations on how to make the state’s schools safe. In addition, the General Assembly allocated $60 million in the state budget via the School Safety and Security Committee for grants to schools across the commonwealth to address their unique school safety needs.
The measures were announced today, the sixth anniversary of the Newtown, Connecticut, massacre of 26 schoolchildren and staff at Sandy Hook Elementary School. The city hopes that the bills will be signed by February 14, 2019, the one-year anniversary of the mass shooting of 17 schoolchildren and staff in Parkland, Florida.
“We need to make more progress at the state and federal level and I will do all that I can do make that happen,” said Gov. Wolf.