Judge Upholds Seattle 'Gun Violence Tax'

Judge Upholds Seattle 'Gun Violence Tax'

Judge Upholds Seattle 'Gun Violence Tax'

A judge upheld Seattle's so-called gun violence tax Tuesday, rejecting a challenge from the National Rifle Association and other gun rights groups.

King County Superior Court Judge Palmer Robinson dismissed arguments that Seattle's tax, adopted last summer, exceeded the city's authority under state law.

The measure — one of only a couple of its kind in the nation — adds $25 to the price of each firearm sold in the city, plus 2 or 5 cents per round of ammunition, depending on the type. Officials expect it to raise up to $500,000 a year to help offset the costs of gun violence. The measure is set to take effect next month.

"The NRA and its allies always oppose these commonsense steps to shine light on the gun violence epidemic," said City Council President Tim Burgess, who sponsored the law. "Judge Robinson saw through the NRA's distorted efforts to put gun industry profits ahead of public safety."

The NRA did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment, but another plaintiff, the Bellevue-based Second Amendment Foundation, promised an immediate appeal. The groups have argued state law puts responsibility for regulating firearms solely in the hands of the Legislature, not local governments.

 

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