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Columbus City Council approves new gun rules

semiautomatic weapons and high-capacity magazine
Rich Pedroncelli
/
AP
The Columbus ordinance bans the sale of magazines that hold more than 30 rounds.

Columbus City Council has approved new gun restrictions as the city remains mired in a fight with the state over the right to control local gun policy.

The ordinance approved by council Monday bans most people from buying magazines that hold more than 30 rounds. It also criminalizes straw sales and adds penalties for unsafe gun storage.

"While we know this is not an overnight fix to an evasive problem, it is a step in the right direction to creating a safer Columbus,” Councilwoman Shayla Favor said at the Monday meeting.

The move follows a Franklin County judge putting a temporary hold on a state banning cities from passing gun restrictions that go beyond state policy. That judge then put a stay on the case as the state writes an appeal.

Speaking to WOSU last month, Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein said his office will fight to lift the stay and then work through the court to permanently enshrine local control of gun restrictions.

"The preliminary injunction remains in effect and the legislative calendar being laid out by leaders at City Hall remains unchanged. The City Attorney’s Office is ready to continue this lawsuit once the stay is lifted so that we can make the injunction against the State’s unconstitutional firearms law permanent," Klein said.

The state maintains it has the authority to block local governments from enacting their own restrictions.

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther recently said city lawmakers are also eyeing red-flag laws and restrictions on AR-15 rifles in the city.

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Steve Brown grew up in nearby Richwood, Ohio and now lives there with his wife and sons. He started his journalism career as a weekend board operator at WOSU while majoring in journalism at Ohio State, where he also wrote for the student newspaper The Lantern and co-founded the organization Students for Public Broadcasting.