AUSTIN, Texas — On Tuesday, state Sen. Roland Gutierrez introduced what he's calling the most comprehensive gun safety legislation in Texas history, alongside other state senators and surviving families of recent school shootings in Texas.
The bills will address issues in the state law including purchasing-age requirements, a bulk ammunition database and the safe keeping of firearms, according to a news release.
Gutierrez spoke at a news conference at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at the State Capitol in Austin. He noted that today is five years since the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, and that last night's shooting at Michigan State University is the 63rd mass shooting in the country in 2023.
"Senate Bill 145 is the bill that amends the Texas Penal Code to outlaw the sale of any firearms, including long guns, to any person under 21 years of age, raising the age from 18 years old," he said, noting that 18 other states have similar age limits.
Senate Bill 912 seeks to expand safe storage requirements for gun owners, requiring all firearms to be properly secured and increasing the penalty.
Senate Bill 914 would require ID for the purchase of ammunition, and make it a Class A misdemeanor to knowingly sell ammo to someone under the age of 18.
"These are things that should be codified in law. These are simple things and simple solutions that make it safer for all Texans," Gutierrez said.
He also advocated for Senate Bill 911, which would create a database for bulk ammunition purchases. The 18-year-old gunman in Uvalde had purchased over 1,600 rounds of ammunition before the attack.
"If you buy a Sudafed at the Walgreens, your information goes into a database. We should have the same requirements for ammunition," Gutierrez said. "We should know when a young kid goes off and buys a bunch of ammo. We should know the quantity of that ammo. We should know who this person is. When a kid buys over 900 rounds of ammunition, and then he buys another 1,600 rounds of ammunition online, somehow the significance of that moment should ring true in somebody's registry somewhere, someone's database somewhere. Law enforcement should say, 'we have to go talk to this young man, quickly.'"
Senate Bill 913 would require gun owners to have liability insurance for property damage, injury or death caused by their firearms, with an exception for members of the armed forces and peace officers.
In recent weeks, Gutierrez has been filing proposed bills that focus on justice and services for victims, school safety, mental health resources and more.
May 24 will be the one-year anniversary of the attack at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, where 19 children and two teachers were killed. Uvalde is in Gutierrez's state Senate district.
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