City Shoots Down Home Permits for Gun Dealers : Firearms: The move in Santa Monica is part of a growing trend by cities to exert control over the proliferation of weapons.


The Santa Monica City Council has voted unanimously to put home gun dealers out of business.

When the approximately 20 Santa Monica residents who sell guns out of their homes seek to renew their city permits on July 1, they will be told their business has been outlawed.

The proposal to ban home gun dealers was made last month by City Councilman Kelly Olsen. It is based on similar laws enacted by Oakland, Berkeley and San Francisco. All are part of a recent effort by local jurisdictions to exercie what control they can over the proliferation of guns, which are usually regulated by federal and state agencies.

"At a recent National League of Cities conference, there were various sessions on this very topic," said Assistant City Atty. Joseph Lawrence. "It's also part of a Justice Department and Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms Department attempt to further clamp down on the availability of guns."

A second part of the new ordinance establishes strict guidelines for anyone who wants to open a gun shop in the city's commercial areas. It gives the police chief broad authority to screen applicants and provides strict security measures to protect the store's guns and ammunition from theft.

Moreover, the dealers' operating permit will have to be renewed by the city every year and no gun shops will be allowed within 1,500 feet of schools, day care centers or each other.

In contrast to its usual lengthy discourse on issues, the council passed the emergency measure almost without comment.

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