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Rep. Josh Bray is crafting legislation to make Kentucky a Second Amendment Santuary State. (LRC photo)

FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) – Kentucky would become a Second Amendment sanctuary state if legislation being proposed for the 2022 General Assembly is enacted.

The measure, which will be sponsored by Rep. Josh Bray, R-Mt. Vernon, would bar state and local law enforcement agencies from enforcing federal restrictions on the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms. It would also prohibit local governments and other public agencies from allocating public resources or money in the enforcement of federal firearm bans. It includes firearms themselves, ammunition and firearm accessories.

“President Biden has declared gun control a priority for his administration, and we know that if he doesn’t get what he wants from Congress, he will abuse his executive authority through rulemaking,” said Bray, who represents all of Garrard and Rockcastle counties and a portion of Madison County. “This sends a clear message that Kentucky is a Second Amendment sanctuary and that there is no question we will defend the Second Amendment against any attempt to infringe upon it.”

Bray says his proposal would further strengthen a statewide movement, as fiscal courts in almost every Kentucky county have approved similar language, and cities across the state have declared themselves Second Amendment sanctuaries.

“Firearms play an enormous role in our state’s history and our lifestyle today. Kentuckians want to enjoy the outdoors and pass along the tradition of hunting and sportsmanship. However, we also recognize that the Second Amendment was crafted to ensure we can protect not only country, but also ourselves,” he noted.

The proposal comes in response to a plan revealed by the Biden administration last week, which they call a comprehensive strategy to combat gun violence and other violent crime. 

According to the White House, it implements preventative measures that are proven to reduce violent crime and attacks the root causes, including the flow of firearms used to commit crimes.

It will use ARPA funds to help state and local governments put more police officers on the beat, with resources, training and accountability needed to engage in effective community policing; plus supporting proven community violence intervention programs, summer employment opportunities and other investments to reduce crime and make neighborhoods safer.

The White House says it will also address the direct link between gun violence and the rise in violent crime by taking immediate steps to keep guns out of the wrong hands by strengthening ATF’s efforts to stem the flow of firearms used in crimes and by launching multijurisdictional firearms trafficking strike forces to stop illegal gun trafficking across state lines.

Bray’s measure, which is currently designated Bill Request 171, would be retroactive to January 1, 2021, if enacted into law.

The full text of BR 171 can be found here, or by visiting the Legislative Research Commission’s website at www.legislature.ky.gov, which is where you can also see all legislation that is being proposed for the upcoming session.

Lawmakers will convene on Jan. 4.

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