PHOENIX - AZ House Minority Leader, Chad Campbell (D-Phoenix), held a news conference to introduce a plan that would expand funding for school safety programs and change existing gun laws.
Campbell presented his Safer Schools, Safer Communities proposal for news media at the State Capitol Wednesday. The total cost would be roughly $100 million. Some points that were outlined:
- If passed, it would triple funding for the School Resource Officer (SRO) program. Under the proposal, it would receive $25 million, a $17 million increase from current funding.
- Twenty million dollars would be allocated to a fund that would provide grants to enhance security measures at schools.
- The number of counselors in schools would be doubled. This portion would cost $62 million.
Campbell proposes that the money come from a $676 million surplus carry-forward balance. Also on the table, "ending the student tuition organization tax credit program and closing loopholes in the sales tax code," he said.
Campbell also proposed stricter gun regulations.
- Part of the proposal includes closing the "gun show" loophole by requiring sales and transfers to take place through a federally licensed firearms dealer to ensure all background checks and other requirements are met.
- It would also require that person-to-person sales, loans and transfers of any firearms defined as "assault weapons" be processed by a licensed dealer to ensure a background check, and other requirements that would be imposed if the purchase were made from a dealer are met.
- He also wants to restore the concealed weapons permit requirements that were in place prior to 2010. If passed, training would be required to receive a permit to carry a concealed firearm.
- The proposal also limits access to firearms for individuals who the court determines are a risk to themselves or others and those who have an order of protection issued against them.
Campbell says he hopes this will not be a partisan issue. "We have to have an honest discussion about gun violence," he said. "The only way to effectively change things is to implement comprehensive solutions."