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Jersey City to only buy guns from 'socially responsible' manufacturer, officials say

 By Terrence T. McDonald | The Jersey Journal  on September 29, 2014 at 7:49 AM




A Pennsauken-based weapons and ammunition supply company is set to win a $500,000 contract to provide firearms and ammo to Jersey City police under new rules that Mayor Steve Fulop has said will help "shape the dialogue" on gun control nationwide.

Lawmen Supply Company, one of two bidders for the contract, had to answer questions regarding how it handles firearms it purchases back from the city, whether it manufactures or sells assault weapons for civilian use and whether it agrees not to sell certain firearms for civilian use.

Jersey City is the first municipality to seek this kind of information about suppliers' practices. Seattle and other cities are reportedly interested in replicating the city's initiative.

The questions, which have raised the ire of gun rights advocates, are "socially responsible," according to Jersey City. Fulop, who will travel to Los Angeles today to participate on a panel on gun violence, has said that in the absence of nationwide legislation to curb gun violence, big-city mayors must act.

Lawmen's bid was about $10,000 higher than the only other bidder — Atlantic Tactical, of Pennsylvania — but the city said Lawman's bid "best met the needs of the department."

The questionnaires the city required the bidders to fill out show Lawmen said it does not sell weapons to civilians, while Atlantic Tactical said it agreed "not to sell any firearms that are prohibited by civilian use." Regarding possible sale of assault weapons to civilians, Lawmen said it sells weapons only to law enforcement, fire or EMT personnel, while Atlantic Tactical said all its firearms sales "comply with the respective local, state and federal law."

Asked whether the bidders' answers played a part in the city's decision to award its contract to Lawmen, Fulop said in a statement, "certainly the question of who they sell to and what they will do with weapons we return to them was an important factor."

The City Council must vote on the deal before it's finalized.

Fulop's predecessor, Jerramiah Healy, long advocated for stricter gun-control laws, and as a result was a frequent target of gun rights advocates. Since Fulop's election last May, he, too, has been the subject of gun enthusiasts' derision.

A member of the National Rifle Association's board of directors in December came under fire when he noted that Fulop's grandparents were Holocaust survivors, adding, "so you've got to wonder why he is not getting it." And in April, gun rights advocates cheered when a state appeals court ruled that Jersey City seeks too much information on its gun permit applications. Fulop said the city will appeal.



Source: http://www.nj.com/jjournal-news/index.ssf/2014/09/jersey_city_will_only_buy_guns.html

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