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Ottiano Assigned to Gun Safety Panel

Sen. Christopher Ottiano is one of 20 members appointed to a new task force which will review gun ownership guidelines.

State Sen. Christopher Ottiano. Credit: General Assembly Press Bureau
State Sen. Christopher Ottiano. Credit: General Assembly Press Bureau
A local legislator has been appointed to a state gun safety task force, state Senate President M. Teresa Paiva Weed announced this week.

Sen. Christopher Ottiano [R-Portsmouth, Bristol] is one of 20 members to the new panel, whose stated goal is "to balance firearms safety and behavioral health," and potentially offer new guidelines for gun ownership by people with diagnosed mental illness, according to a statement released Sept. 18.

Approved by the General Assembly this past summer and signed by Gov. Lincoln Chafee in July, the task force also includes mental health professionals, law enforcement officials, and members of the Federated Rhode Island Sportsmen’s Club.

The state's participation in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System is among the issues to be reviewed by the panel. Rhode Island currently requires NICS reviews for all gun sales, but does not provide mental health or substance abuse information to the system.

Under the original legislation, the group had a Jan. 1, 2014 deadline to present recommendations to the governor; it's expected that the timeframe will be extended to allow more time for the group to work on the issue.
ralph September 19, 2013 at 09:26 AM
Whenever I read an article where Paiva-Weed is quoted in regards to the topic of "guns", it just simply stinks to high Heaven. This so called panel has Liberal stench all over it. Sorry to Mr Ottiano, I mean no disrespect to him. However, when I see that a panel will review policy about mental health and substance abuse when it comes to gun ownership, I cringe. The reason is the last sh*t storm that occured when Ms. Paiva-Weed and her colleagues tried to push gun control through the GA. So now this? I am all in favor of exploring the idea of preventing those with mental illness or substance abuse the inability to purchase or own a weapon. However, with the track record of Ms. Paiva-Weed and crew, I just can't think that this is just another smoke screen to forward her and others agenda in violating the constitutional rights of RI citizens.

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