On Friday, April 10th, Governor Northam of Virginia announced that he had signed five firearms bills into law, delivering on major promises to the Democrats of the increasingly progressive state.
After a tremendous pro-gun rally in January drew as many as 50,000 gun owners to the capitol in protest of the proposed laws, many politicos believed that the bills would go nowhere. Northam proved them wrong.
Among the five bills signed into law were:
- SB69 (identical to HB812) – A law limiting citizens to one pistol purchase per month. Police and other government agents are exempt.
- SB240 (identical to HB674) – A ‘red flag law’, which authorizes local police to confiscate firearms from individuals considered to be high risk before a conviction.
- SB70 (identical to HB2) – Requires background checks, including for private sales. Police and other government agents are exempt.
- HB9 – Establishes a legal requirement for gun owners to immediately report lost or stolen firearms.
- HB1083 – Increases the punishment for leaving a firearm where a child could access it to include a prison sentence of 1 year and/or a fine of $2,500.
The news laws are set to go into effect on July 1st.
“We lose too many Virginians to gun violence, and it is past time we took bold, meaningful action to make our communities safer,” said Governor Northam. “I was proud to work with legislators and advocates on these measures, and I am proud to sign them into law. These common sense laws will save lives.”