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LA County passes gun control measures after mass shootings

Rebecca Ellis, Los Angeles Times on

Published in News & Features

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a series of gun control measures Tuesday on the heels of last month's mass shooting in Monterey Park, just 8 miles away from the boardroom.

The package included roughly half a dozen measures aimed at curbing fatal shootings within the county. Most will need to go through additional vetting before they become county law.

Only two ordinances discussed Tuesday are expected to take effect soon. One would prohibit the sale of .50 caliber handguns — firearms with half-inch-thick bullets — in unincorporated L.A. County. The second would prohibit carrying firearms on county property, which includes beaches, parks and buildings — even if the person has a concealed carry permit. There is an exception for law enforcement.

The board will take a final vote on the motion, authored by Supervisors Janice Hahn and Hilda Solis, in two weeks.

"Here we are: Facing a gun violence epidemic that continues to devastate our communities," Hahn said. "Today we're taking steps forward in our fight against gun violence."

Several other measures related to gun reform discussed Tuesday will take more time to implement.


The county is working on zoning restrictions that would enact a 1,000-foot buffer zone between gun stores and "child safety zones," which Hahn defined in the meeting as places where children gather, such as playgrounds. The county is also considering an ordinance that would enhance regulations for gun dealers, including requirements that they maintain security cameras and keep a finger print log.

These regulations would apply only to gun dealers in unincorporated parts of Los Angeles County.

The supervisors also asked the county's lawyers Tuesday to start drafting three separate ordinances aimed at keeping guns solely in the hands of those who know how to use them. One would require gun stores within the county to prominently display warning signs stating that having a gun in the home increases the "risk of suicide, homicide, death during domestic disputes and unintentional deaths to children."

The second would require guns kept at home to be safely stored in a locked container or disabled by using a trigger lock. And the third would require gun owners to have liability insurance. County leaders say they hope insurance would require gun owners to take classes on how to safely use and store guns.


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