Pittsburgh contends that an Allegheny County judge erred when he ruled that three controversial gun ordinances were illegal.
In briefs filed with Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court, the city argued that the ordinances sidestepped Pennsylvania’s superseding law prohibiting municipalities from regulating the ownership, possession, transfer and transportation of firearms.
“Public health research is on our side, Pittsburgh residents are on our side, and the law is on our side, too,” Mayor Bill Peduto said Monday. “It’s disappointing our efforts have had to come to this, but we’ll continue to show the court that our measures comply with every word of state law.”
In response to the 2018 killings of 11 people at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Squirrel Hill, Pittsburgh City Council last year approved three gun bills that Peduto signed into law.
One would ban the use of certain semiautomatic weapons, including assault rifles. A second would ban the use of ammunition and accessories, such as large capacity magazines capable of holding 10 rounds or more of ammunition. A third bill, dubbed “extreme risk protection,” would permit courts to temporarily remove guns from a person deemed to be a public threat.
The city argued that it has legal authority under the Home Rule Charter and state law to regulate the discharge of guns and use of certain accessories within its borders.