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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: January 25, 2021 09:59 AM
From: Representative Dan Frankel
To: All House members
Subject: Empowering local governments to protect their citizens
In the wake of the Tree of Life massacre, Pittsburgh’s local leadership tried to protect its citizens by prohibiting the use of assault weapons and large-capacity magazines within city limits. Despite overwhelming public support for the restrictions, they were blocked by Pennsylvania’s preemption law. 
Philadelphia, likewise, tried to keep children and their families safe by enacting local laws to keep guns and other deadly weapons out of playgrounds and recreation centers. They were also prevented from doing so by state preemption language. 
The reality is that different municipalities have different needs when it comes to firearm safety, and locally accountable leaders should be able to address those needs with their own regulations.
It is time for us to move legislation that will expand the ability of local governments to respond to mass shootings, terror attacks and on-going violence within their municipal borders. I will be introducing two pieces of legislation that will provide municipal and county governments the latitude needed in state law to create local laws that reflect residents’ desire to balance second amendment rights broadly, with protections based on specific community interests.  
These changes will expressly permit the ability of local governments to adopt ordinances that create more secure communities and prevent future massacres within their municipal borders. I hope you will join me in this effort to keep our communities safe. 


Document #1

Introduced as HB1537

Description: The first piece of legislation removes existing preemption language from the Second Class County Code. 

Document #2

Introduced as HB1538

Description: The second piece of legislation will remove existing preemption language from both Title 18 (Crimes) and Title 53 (Municipalities).