City Officials Oppose Regional Assault Weapons Ban Resolution

Fairfax City officials say they want the regional authority to stay out of the gun control debate.

The City of Fairfax joined Frederick County and the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors in urging the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) to withdraw a resolution calling for an assault weapons ban and other gun control measures.

However, Mayor Scott Silverthorne said the March 20 letter was not a ratification of the anti-gun-control movement. The city council voted unanimously in favor of the letter because the city wanted the regional authority to stay out of the gun control debate.

Further, Fairfax City will not withhold dues to the regional organization. Loudoun approved a resolution to withhold its dues for Fiscal Year 2014 until MWCOG repeals its support of the weapons’ ban that was endorsed by the International Association of Chiefs of Police. It calls for an assault weapons ban and several other gun-control measures.

“We were not like the other jurisdictions, and we did not threaten to withhold our dues” Silverthorne said. “We were trying to not focus on issue of gun control. We wanted them (MWCOG ) to focus on regional cooperation.

“We felt that it was important that they stick to the issues and not take their eye off the ball of regional cooperation,” he said. “They work best when they work on regional issues like transportation and our economy.”

MWCOG is an independent, nonprofit association made up of local leaders who gather to address regional issues affecting the DMV. The association is better known for tracking regional employment, homelessness and projecting near-future population growth. For example, the group predicts that the regional population will grow to about 7 million over the next three decades.

The letter asked the board to rescind its approval at its next meeting, set for April 9.

What do you think about the letter Fairfax City officials sent? Tell us in the comments! 

FairfaxMango March 28, 2013 at 05:04 PM
It's time to support common sense gun reforms, especially universal background checks and limits on excessively lethal force like the type used in Newtown. Certainly, this is a national issue and a state one more than a local one. Let's not let the NRA dictate gun laws in favor of the manufacturers. Contact your legislators and support the groups that are countering the NRA's influence.
hugh conway March 28, 2013 at 07:32 PM
The city is correct to stay out of this issue. I also question why our police department is involved with the IACP if the latter are going to get political.
LetsBe Sensible March 28, 2013 at 08:29 PM
Squint April 01, 2013 at 02:15 PM
It is time for people to be responsible for their actions. More people are killed using knives and baseball bats then guns. So we need to start action to ban those as well. More children are killed by planned parenthood, so we need to ban that as well.
Squint April 01, 2013 at 02:19 PM
Exactly, I did not vote for the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. They do not represent me or my family. The government of Virginia does. If the MWCG wants to get political they need to remove their non-profit status.


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