October 8, 2010
Three out of four state House members this week turned their backs on Pennsylvanians whose safety is threatened by the Florida gun loophole. Worse still, the bipartisan majority instead expanded gun owners' rights to blast away at anyone if they feel threatened outside their home or even in their car. The House changes to the so-called castle doctrine mean that armed individuals will have an absolute right to defend themselves beyond their home....
October 7, 2010
LESS THAN a month ago, Marqus Hill was arrested in the slaying of Irving Santana, allegedly shooting him 13 times. Hill's Philadelphia gun permit had been revoked five years ago, but he easily got a permit from Florida, thanks to a frightening loophole that Pennsylvania lawmakers just had the chance to close, but failed. The so-called Florida loophole - which allows someone whose application has been rejected in Pennsylvania to go online and apply for a permit from a state with fewer restrictions - puts the fate of the city's citizens at the mercy of the Florida Department of Agriculture, which issues the permits, instead of the Philadelphia Police Department.
October 5, 2010
Paramedics out of fire union Paramedics are out of the city firefighters union after a ruling by the state Labor Relations Board that paramedics aren't firefighters. Bill Gault, president of Local 22 of the International Association of Fire Fighters, said that he hopes to petition to go before the board again, but that the 220 medics are no longer paying dues and will soon be off the union health plan. The Nutter administration last year appealed to the state Labor Relations Board to remove paramedics from Local 22, arguing that medics have different schedules and do different work.
September 29, 2010 |
When former New Jersey Sen. Wayne Bryant filed his financial-disclosure statements from 2004 to 2006, he listed his law firm, Zeller & Bryant, as a source of earned income. But Bryant did not have to reveal that his firm received $192,000 in retainer fees during that period from an influential Bergen County law firm. An indictment filed Monday in federal court charges that while those fees were purportedly for legal work relating to a Meadowlands project, they actually were bribes in exchange for the senator's support of the law firm's clients' development projects, including proposals to redevelop Petty's Island and Cramer Hill in Camden.
September 21, 2010 |
The Sept. 12 shooting death of an 18-year-old youth in Olney has reignited a political debate between the two men who are vying to be the state's next governor about how permits for concealed weapons should be issued. Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato, the Democratic nominee, claims that state Attorney General Tom Corbett, the Republican nominee, could use the power of his office to close what is known as the "Florida loophole. " Corbett's campaign yesterday accused Onorato of not understanding state gun laws and exploiting the death of Irving Santana for political purposes.
September 18, 2010
If Florida officials hadn't helped a Philadelphia man skirt the city's strict handgun-permit rules, a would-be thief might have gotten a chance to mend his ways. Now it's too late for Irving Santana, 18. He was shot to death early Sunday morning by a man police say caught Santana and two friends breaking into cars in the Hunting Park neighborhood. It's not too late, though, for Pennsylvania officials to close the absurd loophole in state gun laws that helped to arm the alleged shooter - Marqus Hill, now charged with murder.
September 16, 2010 |
When Marqus Hill was charged with attempted murder in 2005, Philadelphia police revoked his permit to carry a concealed weapon. So, Hill, 28, applied for and was granted a gun permit from Florida, which must be honored in Pennsylvania because of a concealed-carry agreement between the states, police said. On Sunday, Hill walked out of a house on Gale Street near B, in Olney, with a loaded gun - as he was licensed to do so with his Florida permit - after seeing some people break into his car, police said.
September 15, 2010 |
When police stripped Marqus Hill of his permit to carry a gun in Philadelphia after a 2005 confrontation with police, Hill didn't let that stop him: he simply applied for a firearms license from Florida. Though police said Hill lost a 2008 appeal to win back his Philadelphia permit, and reacted by assaulting a police officer in court, Florida mailed Hill a license to carry a firearm last year. Early Sunday morning, police said Hill, 28, used that weapon to gun down an 18-year-old who allegedly broke into Hill's car, shooting him 13 times.
September 2, 2010
AT LAST, a reasonably balanced article ( "The Florida Loophole" ) on the issue of Pennsylvania's license-to-carry gun reciprocity agreements with other states. Rather than the usual narrative, designed to leave the impression that dangerous criminals are lining up by the thousands to circumvent our laws, we get just a bit closer to the truth. Florida doesn't issue permits to any out-of-state residents who'd otherwise be denied permits according to their own state laws. The overwhelming majority of denials in Philadelphia wouldn't occur in any other county in our state.
August 31, 2010
WHAT IS the so-called "Florida loophole," and why is it such a bone of contention in Philadelphia? Under reciprocity agreements with Florida and some other states, Pennsylvanians can get nonresident permits from those states through the mail to carry concealed weapons, even without a Pennsylvania permit. Philly cops say it allows people who have been denied a gun permit in Philadelphia to circumvent local authorities. But gun-rights advocates say that it's necessary, because the Philadelphia Police Department is much stricter on applicants than other counties in the state.