The League of Women Voters of Connecticut urges you to vote against any last minute amendments that would allow persons to keep assault weapons and large capacity ammunition magazines who have defied the law by failing to register these weapons and LCAMs as required under PA 13-3, the Gun Violence Prevention and Children’s Safety Act passed on a strong bipartisan basis last year.
Public statements that the registration requirements are invalid have no basis in law. The constitutionality of the new gun law has been upheld in the February 4, 2014 Federal court decision in Shew v Malloy, which dismissed a constitutional challenge without even calling a hearing.
Moreover, in response to complaints by gun owners of problems registering assault weapons and large capacity ammunition magazines with the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) by the January 1, 2014 deadline, Gov. Malloy facilitated an extension for gun owners who had encountered administrative difficulties. Under this extension, DESPP accepted and processed the applications from gun owners to register assault weapons and large capacity magazines that were claimed to have been submitted to the state agency by the statutory deadline but were not received by that date.
LWVCT strongly opposes any blanket amnesty provision that fails to provide a penalty for gun owners who made no effort to comply with the requirements of the new gun law, despite significant publicity about the law, information posted on the DESPP website and the extension granted.
At the April 3 press conference in Hartford marking the first anniversary of Connecticut’s new gun law, we heard how its provisions have already made a difference—improving public safety by keeping firearms out of the hands of those with plans for horrendous criminal assaults. We cannot weaken this important legislation that the people of Connecticut wanted and that our legislature so courageously enacted.
Sue F. McCalley, Gun Laws Specialist
Alison Rivard, VP Public Issues