As the debate over gun control reaches a fevered pitch with President Barack Obama releasing his proposed gun law changes, the San Anselmo Town Council and the Fairfax Town Council stepped into the fray last week, adopting resolutions in support of efforts to address gun violence in the United States.
City of Mill Valley officials are looking at their neighbors to the north as they consider whether or not to join them.
"I will be taking a look at the actions by our neighbors and discuss (Mayor Andy Berman) ideas that might be most appropriate for Mill Valley," City Manager Jim McCann said in an email.
At its Jan. 8 meeting, the San Anselmo Town Council voted 3-1 to adopt a resolution in support of the Mayors Against Illegal Guns “Statement of Principles,” which was created in response to the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre in December.
Two days later, the Fairfax council voted 3-2 to do the same.
The Mill Valley City Council has not yet placed a similar resolution on its agenda and must strike a balance between an interest in doing its part to curb gun violence and a longstanding city policy, adopted in 1985, that states that the council "will not take a position for or against issues which are State or National in scope, unless the particular issue directly relates to the City’s ability to govern and/or to provide services to its residents."
Berman has stated his strong support for the Marin County District Attorney's Office two designated gun buy-back events, the first of which garnered more than 800 guns in exchange of $100 to $200 payments.
The Mayors' “Statement of Principles” advocates working together to find innovative ways to advance the following:
- To punish — to the maximum extent of the law — criminals who posses, use and traffic illegal guns.
- Target and hold accountable irresponsible gun dealers who break the law by knowingly selling guns to straw purchasers.
- Keep lethal, military-style weapons and high capacity ammunition magazines off our streets.
- Work to develop and use technologies that aid in the detection and tracing of illegal guns.
- Support all local, state, and federal legislation that targets illegal guns; coordinate legislative enforcement, and litigation strategies; and share information and best practices.
- Invite other cities to join in the new national effort.
- Oppose all federal efforts to restrict cities’ right to access, use, and share trace data that is so essential to effective enforcement, or to interfere with the ability of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to combat illegal gun trafficking.
The Fairfax council reportedly modified its resolution and chose to withhold its support of sharing trace data due to privacy corners. San Rafael Mayor Gary Phillips already has signed the resolution without consulting the city’s council members, according to the Marin Independent Journal.
Other Marin towns are expected to vote on adopting the resolution soon.
How do you feel about the towns passing these resolutions? Should Mill Valley follow suit? Should it take diferent or additional action? Tell us in the Comments!
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