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Friday, September 22, 2023

Redwood City seeks tighter control of retail gun and ammunition sales

In response to community concerns, the Redwood City Council is considering new regulations to further control retail sales of guns and ammunition within City limits, and has asked its residents to conduct a survey and attend public meetings to raise the issue.

This proposal will affect all retail stores that carry these products, including all sporting goods stores and gun stores. On October 24, 2022, the City Council enacted a temporary moratorium on the establishment of new gun and ammunition retail sales. The temporary moratorium is in effect until the regulations are established, or until October 23 of this year. 

All those residents who like to provide their comments through a poll, which is available in English and Spanish. 

Or go directly to the next public meeting that will be held entirely in Spanish on April 5 at 6:00 p.m. at the Community Activities Building, located at 1400 Roosevelt Ave.

Additionally, residents can also email firearm_sales@redwoodcity.org

Oral comments will be accepted at the Planning Commission meeting tentatively anticipated for May 2. 

What is under consideration?

The City Council will study the regulation of the retail sale of arms and ammunition, while the key objectives of the municipal ordinance under development include limiting the exposure of unsupervised children to firearms; and the protection of places such as schools, nurseries, places of worship, libraries and parks, from the proximity to the sale of arms and/or ammunition.

Map of places with sensitive uses such as schools, nurseries, places of worship, libraries and parks, close to the sale of weapons and/or ammunition.

Also, ensuring that law enforcement can confirm that firearms and ammunition are securely stored and accounted for at retail establishments; and the requirement of local municipal permits to open retail gun and ammunition stores.

The city council specified that it does not seek to prohibit all sales of firearms or ammunition in Redwood City, nor to regulate the right to possess, acquire or carry a firearm or ammunition.

Key dates

On April 5, the proposal will be refined, while on May 2 the public hearing of the Planning Commission and recommendation for the adoption of a resolution will be held "with a 10-day notice of hearing."

A public hearing of the City Council and the first reading/introduction of the Ordinance are expected to take place on May 22; the second reading/adoption of the ordinance proposed by the Municipal Council will take place on June 12; while by July 12 it will be decided whether to adopt the proposed Ordinance.

It should be remembered that on October 24, 2022, the Municipal Council voted to adopt Ordinance No. 2515 as an urgent precautionary measure, imposing a 45-day moratorium for the establishment of new retail uses dedicated to the sale of firearms. or ammunition. 

The City Council adopted the Temporary Moratorium after residents, through detailed correspondence and public testimony, expressed concern that a new retail establishment dedicated to the sale of firearms and ammunition could open a location in the city, without that it have the opportunity to consider planning and zoning issues with respect to location, for example, retail in proximity to sensitive uses such as schools, parks, and residences, or with respect to conditional use provisions.

Currently, Redwood City does not have specific regulations for firearms retailers, so it is treated like any other commercial retail business.

The 45-Day Moratorium was adopted to "pause," for the short term, the establishment of new firearms and ammunition retailers to allow the City time to study and review planning and zoning regulations governing the establishment of new firearms and ammunition retailers. retailers engaged in the sale of firearms and ammunition, including with respect to the appropriate processes, locations, and conditions for the approval and establishment of such retailers.

However, on November 28, 2022, the City Council adopted a new ordinance extending No. 2515, to allow the City time to study and consider enactment of zoning measures for future firearms retail uses. or ammunition. 

The extension of the temporary moratorium is through October 23, 2023, although staff anticipate that the City Council will consider the policy recommendations in May 2023, with the temporary moratorium ending once local regulations are adopted.  

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Pamela Cruz
Pamela Cruz
Editor-in-Chief of Peninsula 360 Press. A communicologist by profession, but a journalist and writer by conviction, with more than 10 years of media experience. Specialized in medical and scientific journalism at Harvard and winner of the International Visitors Leadership Program scholarship from the U.S. government.


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