Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 090214
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File Number: 090214 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-127-09 Control: Board of County Commissioners
File Name: URGING TO REINSTATE THE FEDERAL ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN Introduced: 1/29/2009
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 2/17/2009
Agenda Date: 2/17/2009 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: LEGISLATURE
  U.S. CONGRESS
  URGING
Sponsors: Barbara J. Jordan, Prime Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Sponsor
  Dorrin D. Rolle, Co-Sponsor
  Katy Sorenson, 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 2/17/2009 11A12 Adopted P
REPORT: Commissioner Sorenson asked that she be listed as a co-sponsor to the foregoing proposed resolution. Hearing no further questions or comments, the Commission proceeded to vote.

County Manager 2/13/2009 Additions 2/17/2009

Health, Public Safety & Intergovernmental Cmte 2/12/2009 2C Forwarded to the BCC by the BCC Chairperson with a favorable recommendation P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Valda Clark Christian read the foregoing proposed resolution into the record. Chairwoman Heyman relinquished the Chair to Vice-Chairwoman Sosa. The Committee proceeded to vote on this proposed resolution. Commissioner Jordan reminded the Committee members that police departments, local communities and municipalities supported this proposed resolution urging the United States Congress to reinstate the federal assault weapons ban. Commissioner Sosa noted she supported forwarding this proposed resolution to the Commission for consideration, but indicated she would not support it in the end because criminals would obtain and possess these types of weapons anyway. Commissioner Rolle asked to be listed as a cosponsor on this proposed resolution. Chairwoman Heyman requested staff to prepare the appropriate memorandum to the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) Chairman Dennis C. Moss requesting that the Board's Rules and Procedures be waived to hear this proposed resolution at the February 17, 2009, Board meeting.

County Attorney 2/2/2009 Referred Health, Public Safety & Intergovernmental Cmte 2/12/2009

County Attorney 1/29/2009 Assigned Jess M. McCarty 2/6/2009

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, on Friday, January 23, 2009, a gunman opened fire on a crowd of about 50 people who had gathered at the corner of NW 71st Street and 15th Avenue; and
WHEREAS, nine people were wounded, including two that were tragically killed, in what police called one of the largest mass shootings in Miami history; and
WHEREAS, the two people killed were both teenagers, Brandon T. Mills, age 16, and Derrick “Termite” Gloster, age 18; and
WHEREAS, witnesses described the firearm used as large assault weapon, like an AK-47; and
WHEREAS, the incident followed the September 13, 2007 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, in 2007 there were 16 deaths in Miami-Dade with the use of assault weapons, and in 2008 there were 15 such deaths, according to the Miami-Dade Police Department; and
WHEREAS, these incidents exemplify the dangers of semiautomatic assault weapons, such as UZIs and AK-47s, that 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, 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 reinstate 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 Clerk of the Board to send a certified copy of this resolution to the Miami-Dade County Congressional Delegation, the Governor, Senate President, House Speaker, and Chair and Members of the Miami-Dade State Legislative Delegation, and the Presiding Officer and Members of the governing bodies of the other 66 counties in Florida.
Section 5. 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 authorizes and directs that the 2009 Federal and State Legislative Packages be amended to include these issues.



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