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Massachusetts Gun Laws May Get Tougher

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Massachusetts House Speaker Robert DeLeo is planning to unveil a sweeping gun safety bill on Tuesday which he wants to vote on before the legislative session ends on July 31st.

More than 60 gun control bills were filed at the beginning of the current legislative session just weeks after the massacre at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.   The legislature’s Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security held a series of public hearings across the state last summer.  Committee co-chair State Rep. Harold Naughton said the hearings produced a lot of thoughtful ideas.

" If we can do something to prevent any further tragedies such as happened in Newtown, which is the real driver of this legislation, then I think we will be successful."

A legislative task force issued a report earlier this year with suggestions for reducing gun violence.  It urged standardizing gun licensing procedures and improving mental health background checks.

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston. He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester. Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011. Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.