A proposal by two Oregon lawmakers to require permits for all gunowners is generating buzz online and among Republicans at the Capitol, even before it’s scheduled to be introduced at the Legislature on Monday.
It’s the brainchild of student activists connected to the movement that grew out of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, where a shooter killed 17 people nearly a year ago, according to the bill. Sen. Rob Wagner, D-Tualatin, and Rep. Andrea Salinas, D-Lake Oswego, are sponsoring it.
Wagner said the bill grew out of a meeting he and Salinas had last year with roughly 300 Oregon students following the Florida shooting.
“Any opportunity for conversation around these controversial topics is really important,” Wagner said. “It’s a really important message that we listen to students … about what it’s like to go to school right now.”
The sweeping legislation would also require people to undergo background checks before purchasing or sharing ammunition and would limit ammunition purchases to 20 rounds within a 30-day period, although people could purchase and use unlimited ammunition at shooting ranges. It would ban magazines that hold more than five rounds of ammunition.
Additionally, Senate Bill 501 would require people to securely store their guns and report the loss or theft of a firearm to law enforcement within 24 hours.
If lawmakers pass the proposal, people who ignore it could face severe penalties. For example, anyone who possessed a firearm without a permit could be fine up to $6,250 and sentenced to as much as 364 days in jail.
It’s one of 11 bills dealing with firearms that are scheduled to be introduced on Monday, when lawmakers and Gov. Kate Brown return to Salem to be sworn in for their new terms. The Legislative session begins Jan. 22. Not all of the bills would regulate guns. For example, House Bill 2287 would allow school districts to allow firearm safety courses on school property.
In a press release on Friday, Rep. Bill Post, a Republican from Keizer, said the ammunition purchase limit would make it difficult for gun owners to become proficient and should worry duck hunters.
Post also said he was worried the bill’s ban on magazines to hold more than five rounds of ammunition would mean “your old six-shot revolver would be required to be turned in or destroyed.”
However, the bill exempts .22-caliber revolvers and any lever-action revolver.
A separate bill is also being introduced that would require gun owners to securely store their weapons with locks and make it easier for shooting victims to sue for damages if the gun owner failed to secure the weapon, report the loss or theft of the gun in a timely manner or supervise a child using the gun.
The proposal is named after the two people killed in the 2012 Clackamas Town Center shooting and their relatives are working to pass it.