Hillsborough County Commissioner hopes to ban the sale of assault style weapons

Posted at 7:00 PM, Mar 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-02 21:00:25-05

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — A Hillsborough County official wants to ban the sale of assault style weapons in the county.

Florida House votes down assault weapon ban

Commissioner Les Miller said he would like to see three separate ordinances in the county. One of them would ban the sale of assault weapons. The other one would raise the waiting period for obtaining a firearm to the maximum. The last ordinance would make it a misdemeanor if there is a threat against a school.

"I'm in total agreement. I will certainly be his second," Hillsborough County Commissioner, Pat Kemp, said.

Commissioner Miller was not available to meet with ABC Action News in person to talk about the possible three ordinances. Commissioner Kemp said she wanted to discuss the deadly school shooting in Parkland last night. Authorities said a teenager killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Commissioner Kemp praised the Parkland students for fighting for change.

"I want them to know that the world is listening and certainly, I as a county commissioner am listening too," she said.

Parkland School Shooting

A 2011 law imposes a $5,000 fine on municipal officials who try to enact local gun rules.

The law also gives Florida's governor the authority to remove mayors and commissioners enacting their own gun rules.

ABC Action News confirmed with the governor's office if this were to happen, they would review it.

Commissioner Kemp said she would dispute it.

"I'm more than willing to step forward and do everything I can, including taking a $5,000 fine to do the right thing and send a message to those state legislators that they need to do the right thing too," Commissioner Kemp said.

Not everyone agrees with the idea of banning the sale of assault weapons in the county.

"I think it's absurd. I mean what's it going to do? Do we have an assault rifle problem," Mark Serbu questioned.

Serbu owns Serbu Firearms Inc. He said this is not a gun issue.

"The Parkland shooting was a failure of the system, you know, FBI....Broward County. I mean too many calls were made to the FBI and to Broward County that were ignored," Serbu said.

Serbu said a ban could hurt his business.

"We actually build and sell AR-15's, but not a lot of them. It would limit us being able to sell in our own community, which dumb," Serbu said.

He does not believe this would move forward.

"I don't think so. Like I said, I think the guy (is) grandstanding. He's just trying ot get some political points, you know, in this wave of anti-gun fervor that's going on right now," Serbu said.

Commissioner Miller said on Wednesday he will ask the county commissioners to approve allowing legal staff to write the 3 ordinances. If this continues to move forward, there would be public hearings.