Vermont House Passes Bill Closing ‘Charleston Loophole’ | Fremont Tribune – Government and Politics

The Vermont House of Representatives on Friday passed legislation to keep guns out of hospitals and give law enforcement up to 30 days to extend the maximum waiting period for background checks. for people looking to buy firearms.

In a statement, House Democrat Speaker Jill Krowinski said the bill takes a “necessary step” to close the “Charleston loophole” and ensure law enforcement has the time to do a background check before someone can buy a gun.

The Vermont bill, first passed by the Senate last year, also clarifies that a judge has the power to order a defendant to surrender his firearms while a relief order is issued. abuse emergency is in effect.

The Charleston Loophole is a provision of federal law that gives the gun seller discretion to proceed with a sale if the FBI fails to determine within three business days whether a buyer is eligible to purchase a firearm from fire. It was used by the shooter in a 2015 massacre at a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina, to buy a gun.

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“Today, the House overwhelmingly passed gun safety legislation that would protect Vermonters while respecting our long history of hunting and responsible gun ownership,” Krowinski said. history of domestic violence or other dangerous behaviors, and out of our hospitals where people seek care and the presence of firearms is not necessary.

Before the bill, which has changed significantly from what was originally passed by the Senate, can become law, it must be passed by the Senate again.

Asked about the measure, Bill Moore, a gun policy analyst for the Vermont Traditions Coalition, said lawmakers should have held live hearings.

“We continue to oppose the development of complex political legislation until the legislature returns to meet in person,” Moore said Friday. “The critical aspect missing from the remote session is the relationships and interactions between legislators themselves. No good legislation can truly come from this remote session, with its isolation and lack of human scale.”

But Conor Casey, the executive director of Gun Sense Vermont, applauded the measure. He said closing the loophole in Vermont would only affect about 3% of gun sales.

“Guns have no place in our hospitals, which have increasingly become highly stressed and emotionally charged environments during the pandemic,” he said in a statement.

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