INDIANAPOLIS– Indiana State Sen. Fady Qaddoura said he’s pushing to give communities a say over their own gun control policies.
State law currently prohibits municipalities from regulating guns. However, the senator is arguing local law enforcement and community organizations need a seat at the table.
”We have heard clearly from many communities that they would like organic solutions that are not mandated by the state of Indiana,” State Sen. Qaddoura said.
If passed, this legislation would remove the state’s “pre-emption law.” That means cities and counties would have the ability to create stricter gun control regulations.
”The local law enforcement agency must submit the recommendations to their legislative body, meaning the city council or the county council with recommendations and explanation of why they would like to impose these restrictions,” State Sen. Qaddoura said.
”I’m very appreciative of the senator for initiating that conversation at the state level,” Rodney Francis with SaferINDY said.
SaferINDY is a group consisting of dozens of organizations in support of ending gun violence in Indianapolis. Under the bill, community organizers (like those under the SaferINDY coalition) would be able to collaborate with law enforcement to find local solutions.
”With a little more control and call for accountability and responsibility, we could possibly curtail some of this violence and allow communities to feel safe and thrive,” Francis said.
However, some legal experts argue the pending legislation already faces a lengthy uphill battle.
“This was completely expected,” 2nd Amendment Attorney Guy Relford said.
Relford, who founded the 2A Project, said if this bill were to pass, several gun ordinances he calls unconstitutional would go into effect, meaning the bill would most likely be dead on arrival.
”This is completely inconsistent not only with state policy, but in this case, with the Constitution of the United States, and the majority in the General Assembly is going to see that very clearly for what it is,” Relford said.
State Sen. Qaddoura said he anticipates his bill will be released to the public in late October.