Whitehall-Coplay Press

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Commissioners repeal gun ordinance

Thursday, March 12, 2015 by AL RECKER Special to The Press in Local News

The Whitehall Township Board of Commissioners repealed legislation concerning an ordinance regulating the discharge of firearms within the township to comply with Act 192.

The commissioners unanimously voted to repeal the ordinance.

Act 192 was adopted by the Pennsylvania State Legislature last fall and signed into law by then Gov. Tom Corbett.

Many municipalities, including Northampton, revised their ordinances involving firearms in order to avoid litigation and hefty legal expenses.

The controversial state law has caused a firestorm among local governments.

According to gun rights organizations, the general rule states, "No county, municipality or township in any manner regulate the lawful ownership, possession, transfer or transportation of firearms, ammunition or ammunition components when carried or transported for purposes not prohibited by the laws of the commonwealth."

Acting board President Phillip Ginder noted the township repealed amending a chapter of its ordinance and replaced it with the wording, "It shall be unlawful for any person to use and/or discharge rockets, fireworks of every nature whatsoever, powder or any dangerous combustible material within the corporate limits of the Township of Whitehall."

Board President Linda Snyder and Clair Hunsberger were not present.

The commissioners made no comment regarding their votes.

Bob Wieder, informing the commissioners he was representing Pennsylvanian's for Self Protection and the Lehigh Valley Tea Party, before the vote was taken said, "We urge you to vote yes."

Weider added his groups want to make certain all municipalities in the state are complying with the new law.

The township previously had signs at its parks and playgrounds that posted rules, such as prohibiting firearms at such public places.