PA House passes House Bill 979 that would make it easier for gun owners and gun groups to challenge local laws

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HARRISBURG, P.A. (WETM) – In the Keystone state, a long dispute over local gun laws is leading to new legislation aimed at repealing firearms restrictions, however, Governor Wolf says the bill is bound for a veto.

Tuesday, House Bill 979 passed the house on a 124-79 vote.

“The goal of this bill is to keep it uniform on our gun laws throughout the commonwealth and that’s what we need to do so that there’s consistency and uniformity so that people know what they’re getting into when they jump in their car, and they have a concealed carry permit and they drive throughout multiple municipalities or boroughs or counties that that’s one consistent law throughout,” said Representative Clint Owlett.

The bill, introduced by state Representative Matthew Dowling promises to strengthen Pennsylvania’s firearms preemption law.

“The bill is so that they don’t find themselves in an awkward situation not having to understand all 2500 different laws when it comes to firearms,” said Owlett.

In 2014, former Governor Tom Corbett signed a similar bill into law but later struck down in court on a technicality.

Although this bill could be vetoed by the governor, Representative Owlett says the plan is to run a veto override, if possible.

“The governor has weighed in after this bill started to move through the process. He’s weighed in and said, it doesn’t matter what the legislature does. I’m going to veto it. That’s kind of bully-type mentality and, saying, you guys can do what you want, but I’m just going to end the bill when it gets to me. We’re not down here to run the governor’s agenda. We’re down here to run the bills that we are hearing about from our constituents,” said Owlett.

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