City of Columbus suing Ohio over gun bill

Local News

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The city of Columbus is suing the state of Ohio over the passing of a recent gun law. 

According to a release by city officials, a lawsuit has been filed against legislation enacted by the state late last year that would make Ohio’s currently broad gun laws even more expansive.

The release states the law, Am. Sub. House Bill 228, is favorable to the gun lobby and that former governor John Kasich vetoed the bill after he expressed concern that the changes violate the Ohio Constitution’s Home Rule provision that allows local governments to pass ordinances specific to their residents’ needs, without the threat of intrusion from the state.

Columbus is suing specifically over changes the bill makes to Ohio Revised Code Section 9.68, the state’s so-called “Right to bear arms –challenge to law” provision. 

“In this era of heightened gun violence and mass shootings, we cannot allow the state to strip cities of our authority to pass laws that best serve the needs of our residents,” said Klein.  “What works best for folks living in Columbus might not be the same as what is best for those living in Belpre, or Toledo—which is why it’s critical for cities to protect our ability to address our unique communities.” 

The city’s lawsuit states in part:

By passing Am. Sub. H.B. 228 and R.C.9.68, the General Assembly has taken it upon itself to tell the City of Columbus how to best manage the affairs of its citizens. The General Assembly has also unconstitutionally limited the legislative power of municipalities. But it has not stopped there. It has also usurped the role of the judicial branch of government by declaring actions of the City null and void. Finally, it passed a law that contains no standards for enforcement and subjects local governments to ruinous expenses if they attempt to exercise their constitutionally protected rights.

By declaring any action of a legislative branch of government null and void, the General Assembly has exercised a judicial power not conferred by the Ohio Constitution

To read the full lawsuit, click here: 

“We recognize that gun violence is a public health crisis and are committed to implementing all-encompassing strategies that have a positive impact on our residents,” said Ginther. “The battle must be legislative, as well. Our efforts to enact common-sense ordinances to reduce gun violence were met with House Bill 228 from the state legislature. It flies in the face of the Ohio Constitution’s Home Rule provision that allows local governments to pass ordinances specific to their residents’ needs, without the threat of intrusion from the state. I stand with City Attorney Zach Klein in suing the State of Ohio to overturn this bill that threatens the safety of our families.”

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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