The Independent Florida Alligator,
April 23, 2018-
The City of Gainesville joined 10 other Florida cities in a lawsuit challenging portions of the state statute restricting local regulation of guns. The City Commission unanimously approved a motion Thursday to sign the city’s name onto the lawsuit. Commissioners Harvey Ward, Helen Warren, David Arreola, Adrian Hayes-Santos and Mayor Lauren Poe also signed on as individual plaintiffs. The lawsuit, against Gov. Rick Scott and other state officials, challenges the personal penalties the state statute imposes on local officials who attempt to regulate firearms and the city’s inability to regulate firearms on city-owned property.
Currently, local government officials who enact legislation to regulate firearms can be subject to a $5,000 fine and removal from office, according to a Florida statute. The 11 cities are arguing the personal penalties are unconstitutional. “The state of Florida and Rick Scott have continued to pass preemption laws restricting local communities from being able to protect their residents,” Hayes-Santos said. Hayes-Santos chose to sign on as an individual plaintiff because he feels the state’s preemption law prevents local governments from being able to do their jobs.