San Jose Mayor Wants to Strengthen Local Gun Laws

Amid rising rates of armed robbery in San Jose and a spike in gun deaths nationwide, Mayor Sam Liccardo on Tuesday unveiled a slate of firearm safety measures that he hopes will set the tone for other cities.

The proposal, which he introduced alongside Vice Mayor Chappie Jones this morning, would direct staff to draft an ordinance with four key provisions.

It would require gun sellers to record video and audio of all transactions, tighten up inventory checks and to train sales staff to keep an eye out for straw purchase. It would ban people from selling guns out of their homes, mandate licensing for concealed firearm-related transactions and require gun shops to post signs emblazoned with local laws, suicide warnings and resources for people impacted by domestic violence.

If a pending state gun control bill fails to regulate 3D-printed guns, Liccardo said he’d also advise the city to extend local rules to those devices as well.

“While our current occupant of the White House tweets about emergency declarations, a real crisis persists in the 39,377 Americans who died from gun violence in 2017,” the mayor declared in a news release. “The federal government—cowering in the presence of NRA lobbyists—has abdicated its role to safeguard Americans by implementing reasonable firearm regulations. In the absence of federal leadership, cities and states will continue to step up to do more to keep our residents safe. By confronting ‘straw purchases’ of guns for felons and other people who should not possess guns, these reforms can prevent guns from getting into the wrong hands, and offer a model for other U.S. cities and states to follow.”

Click here to read the proposal.


  1. I was taking this seriously until the unnecessary Trump bashing started. When you’re ready to have adult conversations about adult things, get back to me…


  2. Mr. Mayor,
    This is a sanctuary city, you and your city council have invited criminals and crime here by the truck load and rising crime rate is the result. So what’s your solution, crack down on the law abiding citizen. Register 3d printers. Make ammunition a pain to by, and if you catch an MS13 member doing bad things let them go.
    Then you can’t under stand why John Q. Citizen wants to by a gun, and if he bags a bad guy raping his wife or strangling his daughter you guys throw the book at him and credit the death to gun violence.

    Brilliant Mr. Mayor, you just keep making me puke!

  3. “It would require gun sellers to record video and audio of all transactions, tighten up inventory checks and to train sales staff to keep an eye out for straw purchase. It would ban people from selling guns out of their homes, mandate licensing for concealed firearm-related transactions and require gun shops to post signs emblazoned with local laws, suicide warnings and resources for people impacted by domestic violence.”
    A few questions.

    How much will this program cost? Include the court costs to defend this program in Federal Court.
    What source of funding will be used?
    How will this program be enforced?

    San Jose has “No” money.

    San Jose does have a beefy RDA debt, an Airport Bond debt that isn’t going away for several generations, unfunded liabilities to the employee retirement systems, let’s not forget the abomination of the $2.2 Billion dollar Capital improvement Program at the Water Pollution Control Plant-like the $25K per day “Delay Claim” that has been going on for a long, long time (the Digester rebuild screw up), and the continuous and countless millions given away to house the Homeless, Vagrants and other associated social miscreants, Bond Measure obligations-the Mayor should be able to fill in the remaining obligations.

    Taking on the NRA (who I support) add the 2nd Amendment court costs with the amount of incurred debt and debt service is unwise.

    David S. Wall

  4. While I appreciate the need to “feel” like something (anything) is being done about gun related crimes and tragedies, how about we back off on new regulations and start clamping down on existing ones? Here are a couple you can start with:

    1. If a gun is used for the purposes of committing a crime (like a robbery, home invasion, threats, etc.), don’t dismiss the charges or plea it down.
    2. Enforce existing gun laws.
    3. See items 1 and 2.

    Creating more laws to frustrate the people that follow them is not a solution that will achieve your goals of reduced “gun violence.” I put “gun violence” in quotes because it conveys different things to different people. The Mayor speaks about this as an emergency, and just like the president is doing to justify a wall, it clouds the issue. When saying:

    “39,377 Americans who died from gun violence in 2017.” (it’s actually 39,773, see CNN article:

    Of the laws the Mayor is suggesting, how many of the 39,773 deaths are in California? And of those, how many are in San Jose? And of those, how many does he believe these laws would affect? My guess is very few. And no matter what the answer, it should be qualified (e.g., of the X gun related deaths in San Jose, we believe Y deaths would be prevented with the four new laws. Here is the evidence to support this and why we think this is a priority).

    So, while everyone agrees we want to reduce senseless death from guns, DUI, suicide, opiates, etc., let’s look at what you, Mr. Mayor, are suggesting to address it. Will laws like this help? Sure, it will help. Will a wall help? Sure, it will help. However, neither of these actions are a priority and it will not solve the problems or even substantially get us in that direction. What it does do is get people all worked up and it “sounds” good to people that hate guns or think guns should be removed from civilized society (i.e., more gun laws are good).

    The unfortunate reality is 23,854 (almost 60%) of the 39,773 deaths are by suicide, not mass shootings or domestic violence or gangs. Creating more laws and rules for gun shops will continue to make it more expensive and harder for people to legally purchase a firearm.
    Is that the outcome you are looking for?

    And what do you think that means? Here’s a clue: Lawful gun owners get less guns, and it becomes more of a wealthy thing. Is that really what the Second Amendment was put in place for?

    The effort should be placed on informing the citizens of San Jose that if they use their guns to further a crime, that’s the end of their freedom. We need accountability, not more laws.

    I have been trying to organize a “civilized” debate on guns for almost four years. No one wants to step up. I have asked media to host. I have offered to help organize a balanced discussion (not an extreme yelling debate). Let’s have a discussion, not a one-sided “we know what you need” government approach. It is a standing offer and request.

    Kirk Vartan
    [email protected]

    • Here is an example…this was posted on Nextdoor 20 hour ago. I am not posting the name or address, but it was in the Rose Garden area.

      home invasion with weapon

      I posted about someone trying to break into our house yesterday. Well today he came back
      This time he climbed over the driveway gate
      Tried to kick in the kitchen door the deadbolt held but Was able to kick in the garage side door and entered our home
      As he was coming around the corner of the stairs I was coming down the stairs
      He produced a gun and said if I called the police he would have his friends come back and kill me and my family
      Yesterday he was driving what looked like a white m3 or m5 crossover Bmw
      When I’m not so rattled I’ll try and post some pics
      Everyone is ok that’s all I’m grateful for but we feel very unsafe in what used to be a very safe neighborhood
      The police took the report and I gave them the video

      I have reported this information to the police.

  5. > “It would require gun sellers to record video and audio of all transactions, tighten up inventory checks and to train sales staff to keep an eye out for straw purchase.

    Maybe San Jose could institute similar requirements for sellers of abortions.

    Oh, wait. Abortion customers have a constitutional right of privacy.

    • Every one of us has a constitutional right to privacy. You don’t need to be an abortion customer to have that right bestowed upon you.

      • > Every one of us has a constitutional right to privacy. You don’t need to be an abortion customer to have that right bestowed upon you.

        Right in front of your nose, Mayor Sam Liccardo is denying the privacy rights of gun owners.

        Did you notice?

  6. Hmmm, in 1996, San Jose tried to “outlaw” guns that were lower cost, available (legally) to citizens. They called these low cost guns “junk guns”. Ron Gonzales used Pat Dando’s vote AGAINST the ban in a hit piece against her in the Mayoral Campaign. City Attorney, said the ban would not stand and city would be on hook for $ defending in court – which was true, and SJ had to pay a lot. From May 1996:

    May 18, San Jose’s City Council voted 6-5 directing the City Attorney to draft an ordinance aimed at banning the sale of affordable handguns (presumably identical to the one just passed in the City of Oakland).
    Councilwoman Charlotte Powers stated that the ABAC (Association of Bay Area Cities) was asking all San Francisco Bay Area cities to pass similar ordinances.
    Councilwoman Margie Fernandes stated that the objective was to have all 21 cities in the east side of the San Francisco Bay to do the same during the month of July (possibly the 4th of July week?).
    While Councilman David Pandori is a supporter of some gun control measures, he noted that the ban does nothing to prohibit the ownership of these guns (e.g. -it doesn’t stop anyone from bringing one in from outside the city) and that he doubts the ban on sales will ever go into effect (i.e. -that the courts will find the ordinance violates the state’s preemption law on the issue).
    Council member Pat Dando, also a supporter of some gun control measures, opposed the directive on the grounds that the courts will probably find the ordinance violates the state’s preemption law and, thus, this action becomes an unnecessary expense to the City (i.e. -to the taxpayers).
    Frank Fiscalini advocated waiting, instead of taking any action now and most probably incurring lots of unnecessary expenses by the City, until the courts have acted on a similar ordinance in West Hollywood.
    San Jose’s Chief of Police, Lou Cobarruviaz, is clearly anti-RKBA and anti-self-defense and made himself clear that he considers all small caliber weapons to be “junk guns”. While the Chief presented numerous statistics, he managed to provide one that destroyed his own arguments by pointing out that far more of the affordable guns were confiscated by the City’s law enforcement officers than were sold within San Jose; thus showing the proposed ordinance will not stop the supply. (Just totally amazing how the gun-grabbers lack critical thinking skills!)
    Mayor Susan Hammer insists the banning of the sale of affordable handguns is a product safety issue; yet the Oakland ordinance, which San Jose’s will be based on, makes an exception for law enforcement officers. Obviously, Susan does not consider the safety and health of law enforcement personal to be as important as the safety and health of the every day citizen! These individuals clearly don’t comprehend that some of the handguns to be included in the sales ban are the standard sidearms of tens of thousands of law enforcement officers across the nation.
    The turnout by the pro-RKBA forces was very good (but it still could have been better). About 300 turned in cards to speak against the ordinance and only 30 in favor of the ordinance did so-the antis were overwhelmingly outnumbered. The pro-RKBA speakers included numerous very well-spoken women and minorities taking a strong stand that they should not be prevented from owning a handgun just because they can not afford a more expensive one and that they had just an equal right to self-defense as everyone else.
    The officers of the Silicon Valley NRA Members’ Council did a very fine job of preparing for the last night’s City Council session and in keeping the pro-RKBA forces focused and in good order before, during, and after the entire session. My thanks and a big pat on the back goes out to all of them.
    This article is abridged from the original posted by Johann Opitz ([email protected]) on [email protected].

  7. I feel much better now knowing when a bad guy shoots me, he’ll have to use a more expensive gun that is guaranteed to go off and kill me. Nothing but the best for bad Californians.

  8. You can’t have a reasonable discussion about Guns with these people. The NRA basically has it right. When an NRA member complains that it is all about gun confiscation then well because it is all about gun confiscation.

    At least retired Supreme Court John Stevens was honest stating his opinion that we should just get rid of the 2nd Amendment.

    If you want to get rid of private ownership of firearms then just come out and say it. None of these local San Jose gun ordinances are about making the public safe but just more and more restrictions on private firearm ownership.

  9. What is the latest on that lawsuit? I recall the 9th saying individual PO’s could be named as defendants. Perhaps when their career is on the line, they will tell the truth about who issued the stand down order. Hopefully the district court judge doesn’t play games to delay as long as possible that day of reckoning, i.e. until Liccardo is termed out of office. If he is found guilty of a crime, forced out of office and sent to jail….well justice will be served.

  10. I look forward to watching this Mayor squirm when he’s on the witness stand and asked, “Mr. Liccardo, please tell the court in your own words excactly what “shall not be infringed” means to you…

    I suspect Liccardo’s weaselly answer will be totally bit different than what those words mean to the average voter.

    We begin with ignorance and arrogance. America is now enduring at least two generations poisoned by an education system whose primary mission has been to convince them to hold their own nation — and the economic system that produced more wealth than any other in the history of mankind — in contempt.

    Their poster child is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the freshman representative and media darling now in approximately the 14th minute of her 15 minutes of fame. No one is happier that Amazon decamped, and she took to Twitter to let her 2.7 million followers know exactly where she stood. “Anything is possible: today was the day a group of dedicated, everyday New Yorkers & their neighbors defeated Amazon’s corporate greed, its worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world,” she tweeted.

    A couple of “inconvenient” realities intrude. First, according to a Siena College Research Institute poll, state voters backed the project by a 56% to 36% margin. As for worker “exploitation,” Amazon noted in November that salaries for those workers would have averaged over $150,000. For perspective’s sake, it should be noted that median household income hit a record high in 2017 — reaching $61,372. Moreover, there would have been a lot of jobs: Amazon promised to create 25,000 of them.

    So what was the problem? This is where hypocrisy gets added to the mix. Despite the corporate giant’s promise to generate $27.5 billion in tax revenue over the next 25 years, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, heartily supported by Mayor Bill de Blasio, promised Amazon $3 billion in taxpayer-funded subsidies to move to Long Island City in Queens. The original deal was for $2.5 billion in subsidies, with an additional $505 million if Amazon increased its job-creation count to 40,000 by 2034.

    Tax subsidies for the richest man in the world? In a city and state where “soak the rich” is tantamount to gospel, the utter hypocrisy of using corporate welfare as an enticement is impossible to ignore. If lower-tax climates are attractive sometimes, why aren’t they attractive at all times — and for all businesses?

    Government “picking winners and losers” is also the essence of crony capitalism, and no one illuminates it better than Nancy Bass-Wyden. She owns Strand Books, a business that has served New Yorkers since 1927. The same city that bent over backwards to help her giant competitor is poised to designate her bookstore a New York City landmark, a move Bass-Wyden insists could kill her business due to the restrictions and regulations attached to the designation. “Unlike Amazon, we have never asked for taxpayer-funded subsidies, tax breaks or special favors,” Wyden said. “All we want to do is to be left alone!”

    Yet while hypocrisy is front and center, and provides Ocasio-Cortez and her fan base with a legitimate argument, ignorance remains the order of the day. “If we were willing to give away $3 billion for this deal, we could invest $3 billion in our district ourselves if we want to,” AOC asserted. “We could hire more teachers.”

    Uh, no. As columnist Allan Golombek is forced to explain, AOC and her followers believe “they have suddenly happened upon a stash of money, as though they found $3 billion under the couch cushion — miracle money that can now be spent on hospitals, schools and decaying subway lines.” The reality? “Rather than handing over a direct grant, [New York state and city] governments would simply forgive some taxes that otherwise wouldn’t be owed to them by anyone,” Golombek adds. “The end of the Amazon deal does not free up a horde of cash for the state and local governments, because they have no extra cash to free up.”

    That’s an understatement. As New Yorkers learned recently, the state is facing a $2.3 billion budget deficit. Why? Gov. Cuomo insists the 2017 GOP tax cut, placing a $10,000 cap on state and local taxes one can deduct from one’s federal tax burden, is the culprit. In other words, while ordinary New Yorkers were getting a tax break, the rich have been saddled with higher taxes. The very same higher taxes on the rich that Democrats all over the nation insist is the cure for all of our fiscal woes.

    Unfortunately, reality bites. “Tax the rich, tax the rich, tax the rich. The rich leave, and now what do you do?” Cuomo wonders.

    The one thing blue states absolutely refuse to do: lower the overall tax rate — by lowering obscene levels of government spending.

    How obscene? Last year New York state spent $153.1 billion to serve a population of 19.5 million people. By contrast, Florida — a state with no income tax — passed an $88.7 billion budget for fiscal year 2018-19 to serve 21.3 million people.

    How can New York afford to spend 42% more money to service a population of 1.8 million fewer people? By treating wealthy New Yorkers like ATM machines. Hence, the rich leave New York — and, unsurprisingly, many of them go to Florida.

    Nonetheless, the true believers remain unfazed by Amazon’s departure. “For decades, local politicians have felt pressure on only one side of this issue: To do whatever it takes to attract companies,” asserts New York Times columnist David Leonhardt. “As a result, those politicians have contributed, often unwittingly, to the radical rise in economic inequality. Amazon’s messy departure from New York is a victory for the other side.”

    Which side is that? “The city has the country’s second-highest income tax, and Mr. de Blasio last month proposed that all private employers be required to provide workers two weeks of paid vacation each year,” The Wall Street Journal reports. “That’s on top of paid family leave. Animus toward business represses the organic investment and job growth that make a dynamic economy.”

    Animus toward business is rapidly becoming a central plank of the Democrat Party’s agenda. Job-killing government regulation skyrocketed under the Obama administration, all while Democrats were asserting 2% economic growth was the “new normal.” That a 2014 National Association of Manufacturers report revealed regulatory costs on all businesses exceed $2 trillion — per year? Regulations that disproportionately affect small businesses? Small businesses that create a greater percentage of jobs than big businesses do?

    Anyone think that contributes to the radical rise in economic inequality — without an iota of unwittingness attached to it?

    Democrats are on the cusp of a civil war between politicians like Cuomo and de Blasio, who see the future returns fueled by incentives as a net plus for their overtaxed state and city, and purists like Ocasio-Cortez and Elizabeth Warren, who will accept nothing less than outright socialist/Marxist-inspired wealth confiscation, even if it kills the economy.

    And while that divide is real, it’s only about one thing: how fast Democrats run out of other peoples’ money to spend.

  11. This summary of what might get proposed:
    “It would require gun sellers to record video and audio of all transactions, tighten up inventory checks and to train sales staff to keep an eye out for straw purchase. It would ban people from selling guns out of their homes, mandate licensing for concealed firearm-related transactions and require gun shops to post signs emblazoned with local laws, suicide warnings and resources for people impacted by domestic violence.”

    – I’m pretty certain that all gun shops *already* record video and audio.
    – Training staff to watch for straw purchases: Common sense… “see something, say something” is what seems to be the mantra today.
    – Requiring shops to post signs, how is that unconstitutional? Again, it seems to be just common sense. Informing people of the rules, or where to get help doesn’t seem that bad.

    BTW, just to note, it’s usually the Repubs that are cowering in front of their NRA overlords (which today is nothing more than the gun makers’ lobby, not the NRA of 60 or more years ago). It’s also the Repubs that wipe their butt with the Constitution that they claim they love so dear, such as the Emoluments Clause or refusing to hear a sitting president’s Supreme Court nominee for an entire year. Reminder: the Constitution is more than just the second amendment.

  12. Why you people want this man more into your business, I do not understand. It’s like mining ore just to make chains to put back on yourselves. What a joke.

    You were given rights, not too many by the way. Why do you want hand them back?

  13. It’s obvious what’s happening: the media repeats their Big Lie over and over again, until the mouth breathers begin to head-nod along in mindless agreement.

    They get more and more spun up with mindless rage as the media continues its drumbeat against its demon du jour:

    “It’s the NRA! They’re EE-E-E-vil!!
    Hang ’em now!! …we’ll have the trial later.”

    But there’s never any real discussion permitted between representatives selected by the NRA, and those Big Media (BM) selects to attack them.

    That’s because BM selects both sides! Otherwise, there might be a reasonable discussion — and then the head-nodders might start thinking for themselves.

    Can’t have that!

    So when the Tee Vee watchers get spun up, pitchforks and torches are issued. Then BM gives ’em a nudge in the right direction, and…

    Ta-Da! Mission accomplished, Boss!”

    Isn’t it amazing that a patriotic, law-abiding, pro-American organization that has been universally admired for the past century and a half, has been totally demonized, practically overnight?

    What for?

    More to the point: who has changed?

    Is it the organization and its members?

    Or, is it the fraction of the Tee-Vee watching public that never asks any questions that might trigger some critical thinking?

    In what amounts to the blink of an eye in our nation’s history, the members of a patriotic, pro-American organization are suddenly forced to defend their patriotism:

    “We don’t break the law, and we don’t tolerate anyone who does. We support our country and our Constitution. We believe in innocent until proven guilty. Members of our organization have overwhelmingly fought and died in greater numbers than almost any other organization, protecting and defending our country.

    Why are you attacking us?

    But no reasonable discussion is permitted by BM, and the result can be seen in one of the comments above:

    “…the Repubs that are cowering in front of their NRA overlords… the Repubs that wipe their butt with the Constitution…

    Sheesh! That kind of ad hominem emo-trashing wouldn’t be allowed in any fair and reasonable discussion, since it would promptly lead to counter-punches, such as:

    “How about instead we think up ways to nitpick your life, Mr Hater? Maybe the taxpayers can hire more bureaucrats to train people to oversee you, since it’s obvious that you’re cowering in front of your own Socialist overlords?”

    Do you like where your demonizing leads, when you’re on the receiving end? Best to stick with facts, isn’t it? An added bonus: discussing facts leads to cooperation and problem solving, instead of animosity.

    Next, why is BM selecting one small segment of the population to demonize and harass?

    NRA members are significantly more law-abiding than the average citizen, not to mention non-citizens, or members of almost any other group.

    If your intent is to reduce crime, why expend limited resources attacking a group of people who are least likely to break the law? If that isn’t a mental problem, then it borders on treachery.

    Or maybe you want to record the names of law-abiding citizens because a group of anti-Americans is trying to destroy our nation, and they’ve convinced you that law abiding folks are your enemy.

    If you disagree, a more reasonable explanation is more than welcome.

    And why would any sane person want to add yet another layer of bureaucracy? For what? To employ more gov’t drones? To chip away even more at the 4th Amendment?

    I can probably think of a half dozen other reasons, but this reason should suffice:

    It ain’t necessary!

    If BM wanted to have a positive effect, it would go after lawbreakers, not the folks who obey the law!

    Is there something wrong with that proposal? Now’s your chance to explain…

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