Marylanders to Prevent Gun Violence (MPGV) continues its commitment to advancing evidence-based policies to reduce gun violence in Maryland by strengthening Maryland’s background check and licensing system, and defending the integrity of Maryland’s firearm laws. During the 2022 session, MPGV will introduce and support bills that address loopholes in current law, improve enforcement of existing laws, and defend against legislation that seeks to weaken Maryland’s current gun laws.
For the 2022 Maryland General Assembly Legislative Session, MPGV will be focusing on two key pieces of legislation.
Child Access Prevention (SB676/HB659)
• Sponsors: Delegates Dana Stein, Sandy Bartlett, and Joseline Peña-Melnyk; and Senators Will Smith and Pam Beidle
• Includes wrapping in older teens, guidelines to store guns unloaded and locked, a graduated system of penalties, and a requirement for a health department sponsored education campaign.
Ghost Guns Regulation (SB387/HB425)
• Sponsors: Leadership bill spearheaded by Attorney General Brian Frosh’s office and supported by Senator Susan Lee and Delegate Lesley Lopez
• Addresses existing stocks of unserialized guns and parts, lines system up with proposed federal requirements, provides a state-level backstop, allows gunsmithing within the confines of overall legal firearm framework.
In addition, MPGV is also supporting:
• Prohibition on Firearms at Polling Sites; HB 30 sponsored by Delegate Henson
• Medicaid Funding for Violence Interruption and Prevention programs sponsored by Senator Charles Sydnor
Attempts to Repeal the Firearm Safety Act of 2013
Each year, a number of bills have been proposed that would repeal key provisions of the landmark Firearm Safety Act of 2013 (FSA). Maryland was one of the few states that was able to pass substantive legislation after the Sandy Hook School shooting. Every year, bills are introduced to eliminate training certification requirements, legalize assault weapons, and generally weaken Maryland’s existing law. MPGV is dedicated to protecting the strong standards set forth by the 2013 legislation and opposes any bills that undermine current law.
Concealed Carry Expansion/Shall Carry
Each year, legislation is introduced in Maryland to make it a “shall carry” state and remove concealed carry permit requirements such as the “good and substantial reason” standard. Other bills aim to remove requirements for training, create exemptions to the permitting requirements, establish concealed carry reciprocity, or allow for expedited permits under certain circumstances. MPGV opposes all legislation that seeks to weaken Maryland’s current concealed carry standards.
Guns in Schools
MPGV opposes all legislation authorizing funding for arming school personnel, or granting permission to county school boards to authorize school personnel to carry a firearm on school property under any circumstances.
Guns and Cannabis (SB190/HB415)
Under federal law cannabis is designated as a controlled substance and a user is prohibited from owning a firearm. In addition, the data seems to indicate that marijuana use, even medical varieties may cause impairment to the user. This is an area that likely deserves significant scientific research, but MPGV feels strongly that the default should not be to allow cannabis users to possess dangerous weapons. We will oppose this legislation.