SAP ordinances have already been enacted in three Oregon counties: by the boards of commissioners in Wallowa County (2013) and Wheeler County (2015), and by initiative petition in Coos County (2015). In 2018, SAPs will be on the ballot in Lincoln, Columbia, Klamath, and Douglas Counties, but initiative petitions in Benton, Crook, Deschutes, Grant, Harney, and Jefferson Counties were either denied or failed to gather the required signatures. The Linn County SAP is in the process of being challenged.
The League believes that federal and state laws are clear that the power to interpret firearm laws does not rest with county sheriffs and that SAPs will ultimately be deemed unconstitutional. Under the U.S. Constitution Supremacy Clause (Article VI, Section 2), county and state law cannot supersede federal law. Also, under ORS 166.170, “the authority to regulate in any matterwhatsoever the sale, acquisition, transfer, ownership, possession, storage, transportation or use of firearms or any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition, is vested solely in the Legislative Assembly.”
We applaud local Leagues who have taken part in previous efforts to prevent SAPS from being enacted. In the upcoming election, we urge you to actively oppose SAP ordinances and to educate voters through advocacy forums, op-ed columns, and letters to the editor. If your county already has such an ordinance, please help advocate for its nullification. Ceasefire Oregon is an excellent resource for information and assistance.