Travis County may back away from gun show ban - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Travis County may back away from gun show ban

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The State Attorney General and now the Lt. Governor are speaking out about guns and how to control the violence.

"The double-barreled lawsuit refers to two potential legal actions...one against Travis County, the other against the city of Austin, because they are trying to impose restrictions on gun shows that violate state law," said Texas State Attorney General Greg Abbott.

Less than a month after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Connecticut, city council member Mike Martinez announced he wanted to try to bring to a vote a ban on gun shows within the Austin city limits and on Travis County owned property.

"In Newtown, Connecticut, I think putting a ban on gun shows would be a great thing, but if it hasn't been a history of gun violence in that place, I don't see a problem with gun shows going on. People have to make a living," said father of two sons, Donald Hunter.

Nine gun shows are scheduled at the County Expo Center this year.

Mother of two young children, Mary Keener, said, "I don't think they should ban gun shows because I think that's where a lot of good people go and buy their guns."

Nine gun shows equals to a $128,000 profit.

"I think the gun show loop hole is glaring and I don't know how easy it would be to institute background checks at gun shows, but just eliminating gun shows means they'll sell their guns somewhere else," said gun owner, Steve Houston.

All kinds of guns are for sale at a gun show and while dealers are required to do background checks, private sellers are not.

State Attorney General, Greg Abbott says his potential legal action could hit the city's wallet in two ways.

Abbott said, "The city of Houston had to pay damages to the person who wanted to hold the gun show. The same thing could happen here against the city of Austin. Also, as we begin this legislative session there is another thing for our legislators to consider, they are giving a lot of tax breaks to the city of Austin."

Travis County Judge, Sam Biscoe says, according to the County Attorney, they don't have the authority to regulate gun shows at the Expo Center.

"In state law right now, we give the option to independent school boards to authorize school personnel to carry concealed weapons in public schools if they take and pass the concealed handgun license," said State Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. "What I'm suggesting that we look at is...no unfunded mandates. The state to pay for robust training for those personnel that are authorized by the school boards, to carry concealed weapons in the schools so that they can protect themselves, they can protect the children and so that they're trained, God forbid we should have an active shooter."

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