Gun Control Legislative Position
In light of the large number of mass shootings and tragic gun violence that has plagued our nation, Worthington City Council has discussed ideas for reducing gun violence, including a request for action by the Ohio General Assembly on responsible, reasonable gun control in the State of Ohio. City Council recognizes that it has no authority to pass local laws to limit the purchase and possession of guns. That authority exists on the State and Federal levels. As such, City Council is not considering gun control legislation at the city level.
Because of limits on cities’ ability to enact gun legislation, City Council President Pro Tem Scott Myers asked Council to consider options that might make an impact on reducing gun violence. He drafted a letter to Worthington’s State Representative Mike Duffey and State Senator Stephanie Kunze, asking them to take steps to enact responsible gun control legislation. This letter was shared with Worthington City Council members, made publicly available in the City Council’s agenda materials and discussed on April 16 and May 7. City Council approved a motion on May 7, 2018 to send the letter with amendments to reflect public input.
City Council timeline for gun control legislative position discussion:
February 20, 2018
City Council President Pro Tem Scott Myers commented about the Parkland, Florida school shooting and asked for Council’s support to instruct staff to explore options for taking a position.
March 19, 2018
City Manager Matt Greeson shared a letter with City Council drafted by staff to the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS) Board of Trustees. As requested during the 2/20/18 City Council discussion, the letter encouraged OPERS to develop and execute a plan to divest itself from firearms investments. City Council voted to approve and send the letter.
April 16, 2018
City Council agenda included Discussion Regarding Gun Control Legislative Positions (Agenda Item 8.B.). Council President Pro Tem Myers’ draft letter to State Legislators was included for consideration. City Council voted to schedule the issue on the May 7, 2018 agenda for a motion on whether to take a position and send the letter to Representative Duffey and Senator Kunze.
April 16, 2018 Staff Memorandum includes proposed letter drafted by City Council President Pro Tem Scott Myers and the 4/13/2018 Ohio Municipal League Legislative Bulletin, which provides a number of updates on gun control related legislation.
May 7, 2018
City Council heard testimony from 24 citizens regarding whether to send a letter to State Legislators asking them to take steps to enact responsible gun control legislation for the State of Ohio. Upon hearing feedback from citizens, Council made a motion to send the letter with amendments in the language to reflect that it is not speaking on behalf of all citizens. The motion was approved by a 6 to 1 vote. The letter will be signed by 6 council members and sent with the minutes from the 5/7/18 meeting to include public comments.
May 7, 2018 City Council Agenda (Revised Draft Letter, Pages 130-132)