Philadelphia law prohibits the use of stock in weapons

Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle L. Parker signed a bill Tuesday banning rapid-fire weapons, just days after the Supreme Court struck down a federal ban on so-called warehouse stocks and on the same day, Senate Democrats unsuccessfully tried to ban them again nationwide.

The local ban goes into effect immediately and prohibits anyone in Philadelphia from manufacturing or purchasing devices designed to accelerate the firing rate of semi-automatic weapons. This includes stocks designed for rifles and “switches” that can be attached to handguns.

Buffer stocks, in addition to being now legal at the federal level, are permitted under Pennsylvania law, and the Democrat-controlled state House was narrowly defeated a bill banning them in May. Switches are illegal under federal law, but that could face a challenge after the Supreme Court ruling.

Parker, who signed the local ban Tuesday during a City Hall ceremony, said that while shootings in the city are failing, her administration “will not rest.”

“When we have devices like so-called switching devices around Philadelphia that can turn a gun into a machine gun, there is no time to rest or slow down,” she said.

The regulations will almost certainly be challenged in court. Under state law, Philadelphia is generally prohibited from enacting gun laws that are stricter than those implemented by state lawmakers.

But in February, an appeals court upheld a 2021 city ordinance banning the production of ghost guns in the city, saying it did not regulate firearms and only prohibited the conversion of certain gun parts into weapons.

Councilmember Curtis Jones Jr., the legislation’s lead sponsor, said the city is prepared for the challenge.

“We have plenty of lawyers,” he said.

” READ MORE: Why is it so difficult for Philadelphia to pass its own gun laws?

The signing comes as the devices have returned to the national firearms conversation following Friday’s split Supreme Court decision striking down a federal ban. The regulation was implemented by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives under former President Donald Trump after the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas that left 60 people dead and hundreds injured.

In the court’s majority opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote that although a stock-equipped rifle can fire at a speed comparable to an automatic weapon – which is illegal for civilians to possess – “it is not a ‘machine gun’ because it cannot fire with more force than a single shot.” “by one trigger function”.

Following the court’s decision, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) said he would introduce legislation prohibiting the raising of voting shares, saying it would return the country to the status quo established under Trump, a Republican.

That effort failed Tuesday after Senate Republicans blocked a vote on the bill.

Parker signed two other significant pieces of legislation on Tuesday. One allows the installation of speed cameras along Broad Street. The second regulates security contractors who work in the city’s privatized eviction system.

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