WV Senate President: Bill trumping city gun laws likely to fail - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

WV Senate President: Bill trumping city gun laws likely to fail

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The proposed bill that would eliminate stricter gun laws in four West Virginia cities in favor of a uniform state law will probably die in the West Virginia Senate, according to Senate President Jeff Kessler, D-Marshall.

The possibilities of House Bill 2760 passing the Senate "are not very good right now," said Kessler on Tuesday. He said that's partly due to threats made against the Senate Government Organization Chairman Sen. Herb Snyder, D-Jefferson.

Under current ordinances in cities such as Charleston, people purchasing handguns must wait 72 hours to process a background check, and they can only buy one handgun per month.

"I don't want to impose myself on any other part of the state," said Danny Jones, the mayor of Charleston. "They want to impose themselves on us."

Currently, several municipalities, including the cities of Charleston and Martinsburg, abide by their own gun purchasing ordinances that were grandfathered into legislation passed in 1999.

But Chavela Simmons, the owner of the pawn shop All-N-One in Charleston, said people who want guns will get guns, no matter what.

"That's only in Charleston," said Simmons, referring to the ordinance. "You can go down ten minutes away and walk away with a [handgun]."

The rule in Charleston only covers handguns; people who pass the instant federal background check can purchase as many rifles and shotguns as they want in the same day, bypassing the 72-hour waiting period.

If the bill will survive, it needs to pass the full Senate by April 3.