Albemarle joins Charlottesville in banning guns in parks, government buildings

Albemarle joins Charlottesville in banning guns in parks, government buildings

It is now illegal to carry a gun on property owned or managed by Albemarle County. The county’s Board of Supervisors on Wednesday unanimously passed its hotly debated firearms ban — making it a Class 1 misdemeanor to carry a gun in any of the county’s parks, community centers or buildings. The Charlottesville City Council passed a similar ban last summer. “I am very supportive of this,” Supervisor Bea LaPisto-Kirtley said before taking the vote. “This is something we need. It makes sense. People shouldn’t be brandishing weapons” on county property. Albemarle had previously banned guns on all county property from 1979 to 2004, when state legislators passed a law forbidding local governments from taking such actions. Last summer, the state gave that power back to local governments. The supervisors, before taking the vote, received numerous comments — and at least one protest — from community members both for and against the proposed ban. A common question posed by residents who opposed the ban was: What problem does this solve? “I’ve lost track of how many people have commented both in person at the meetings and online at the board agenda comment section asking the same basic question: Why do we need this ordinance?” John McMann, a Scottsville resident, said during the public comment section of Wednesday’s meeting. “The answer is still unclear.” Before taking the vote, several supervisors addressed that question. Some noted that without the ban, anyone could bring a gun into public meetings (when they were […]

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