Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 072779
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File Number: 072779 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-1246-07 Control: County Commission
File Name: REINSTATE ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN Introduced: 9/17/2007
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 11/6/2007
Agenda Date: 11/6/2007 Agenda Item Number: 11A12
Notes: Title: RESOLUTION URGING THE U.S. CONGRESS TO REINSTATE THE FEDERAL ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN; URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO IMPOSE A STATE ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN; AND ALTERNATIVELY URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO LIFT THE PREEMPTION ON LOCAL GOVERNMENTS' REGULATING ASSAULT WEAPONS IN FLORIDA AND ALLOW LOCAL GOVERNMENTS TO IMPOSE AN ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN
Indexes: WEAPONS BAN
Sponsors: Barbara J. Jordan, Prime Sponsor
  Audrey M. Edmonson, Co-Sponsor
  Carlos A. Gimenez, Co-Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
  Dorrin D. Rolle, Co-Sponsor
  Katy Sorenson, Co-Sponsor
  Dennis C. Moss, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 11/6/2007 11A12 Adopted P

Budget and Finance Committee 10/9/2007 2F Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Jess McCarty read the foregoing proposed resolution into the record. It was moved by Commissioner Sorenson that this proposed resolution be forwarded to the County Commission with a favorable recommendation. This motion was seconded by Commissioner Diaz. Commissioner Diaz withdrew his second to the foregoing motion. Commissioner Sosa asked Senior Advisor to the County Manager Cynthia Curry to provide the opinion of local law enforcement agencies regarding the impact of this proposed resolution before it was considered by the County Commission. Commissioner Gimenez asked that he be listed as a co-sponsor. Commissioner Jordan noted that the use of firearms and assault weapons had increased since the Assault Weapons Ban was lifted; and that other States had passed an assault weapons ban. It was moved by Commissioner Sorenson that this proposed resolution be forwarded to the County Commission with a favorable recommendation. This motion was seconded by Commissioner Gimenez. Commissioner Diaz noted he withdrew his second based on personal beliefs that officers needed the best equipment to protect themselves from criminals who would violate the ban and use any type of weapon. He also cited the First Amendment to the United States Constitution as a reason he withdrew his second to the motion. Chairman Martinez pointed out that this proposed ban would not apply to police officers and the law enforcement community. Hearing no other questions or comments, the Committee proceeded to vote.

County Attorney 9/17/2007 Referred Budget and Finance Committee 10/9/2007

County Attorney 9/17/2007 Assigned Jess M. McCarty 9/17/2007

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION URGING THE U.S. CONGRESS TO REINSTATE THE FEDERAL ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN; URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO IMPOSE A STATE ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN; AND ALTERNATIVELY URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO LIFT THE PREEMPTION ON LOCAL GOVERNMENTS' REGULATING ASSAULT WEAPONS IN FLORIDA AND ALLOW LOCAL GOVERNMENTS TO IMPOSE AN ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN

BODY
WHEREAS, semiautomatic assault weapons, such as UZIs, AK-47s and similar weapons, are designed for military purposes and have no legitimate use for hunting and other civilian uses; and
WHEREAS, assault weapons are designed to enhance their capacity to shoot multiple targets very rapidly at long range, with a range of up to 100 yards and magazines that commonly enable the shooter to continuously fire dozens of rounds without reloading; and
WHEREAS, the firepower of assault weapons makes them especially desirable to violent criminals and particularly lethal in their hands; and
WHEREAS, according to the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms ("ATF") assault weapons are preferred by criminals over law abiding citizens eight to one such that access to them shifts the balance of power to the lawless; and
WHEREAS, the International Association of Chiefs of Police recently urged Congress to impose an effective assault weapons ban; and
WHEREAS, law enforcement has been united in support of banning these assault weapons as they are of particular danger and concern to law enforcement personnel; and

WHEREAS, limiting civilian access to such weapons lessens the need for law enforcement to carry assault weapons themselves in order to match the firepower capability that criminals with assault weapons would have; and
WHEREAS, semiautomatic assault weapons were banned for a period of ten (10) years beginning in 1994 under the Federal Assault Weapons Act; and
WHEREAS, various studies indicated that the Federal Assault Weapons Act significantly reduced the incidence of assault weapons in the use of crime; and
WHEREAS, the assault weapons ban expired in 2004 and has not been renewed; and
WHEREAS, since the expiration of the assault weapons ban in 2004, there has been an escalation in the presence of assault weapons on our streets as the weapons of choice for gang members, drug dealers and other dangerous criminals; and
WHEREAS, this escalation culminated on Thursday, September 13, 2007, in the tragic shooting of four Miami-Dade Police Officers, including the death of one such officer, Officer Jose Somohano, all arising out of a traffic stop in south Miami-Dade County; and
WHEREAS, 18 people were killed with assault weapons in Miami-Dade County during 2006, and so far in 2007, eleven (11) people have been killed with assault weapons; and
WHEREAS, the states of California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York all have passed laws banning assault weapons; and
WHEREAS, this Board finds it in the best interest of the public safety of this community to reinstate the ban on assault weapons,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that this Board:

Section 1. Urges the U.S. Congress to reauthorize the federal assault weapons ban.
Section 2. Urges the Florida Legislature to institute a state ban on assault weapons.
Section 3. Alternatively urges the Florida Legislature to lift the preemption presently in place and allow local governments to impose an assault weapons ban.
Section 4. Directs the County's federal and state lobbyists to lobby for passage of legislation that reinstates and/or imposes an assault weapons ban, or alternatively, allows local governments to impose an assault weapons ban, and directs the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs to include this item in the 2008 federal and state legislative packages.
Section 5. Directs the Clerk of the Board to send a certified copy of this resolution to the Miami-Dade County Congressional Delegation and the Governor, Senate President, House Speaker, and Chair and members of the Miami-Dade State Legislative Delegation.



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