Background check on gun purchases bill stalls as Parkland mourns two years after shooting

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A bill that aims to strengthen background checks on gun purchases has stalled in the Florida Senate.

After passing the Infrastructure and Security committee unanimously in the first week of the legislative session, SB 7028 hasn’t budged in the nearly four weeks since.

The bill would make all gun sales at gun shows subject to a background check. Currently, only federally-licensed firearm dealers are legally required to do one. Organizers of one recent gun show in Tampa estimated that about 5% of its dealers were not FFLs.

The bill would also force buyers and sellers in private gun sales to notarize a form confirming the buyer is legally able to purchase the firearm.

State Sen. Tom Lee (R-Hillsborough/Pasco/Polk) sponsored the bill and chairs the committee that passed it.

He explained several months ago on 8 On Your Side’s weekly local political show why background checks are important.

“We all have to be willing to be part of the solution if we want to keep Americans and Floridians safe,” Lee said. “I just feel like the common sense thing to do is to take a look at how can we better ensure that weapons aren’t getting in the hands of people that shouldn’t have them or are mentally unstable.”

Currently, the bill is awaiting a hearing in the Senate Judiciary committee, chaired by David Simmons (R-Altamonte Springs).

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