OLDHAM COUNTY, Ky. — At its fiscal court meeting Tuesday afternoon, people packed the room to show support for Oldham County becoming a Second Amendment sanctuary county.
It comes as gun advocates push the movement across the state. Spencer County passed a resolution protecting the right to bear arms on Monday and dozens of other counties are considering similar resolutions.
Kentucky United has garnered nearly 80,000 members on its Facebook page. The group is advocating for counties to pass the resolutions. It also called for supporters to rally at the capitol on the first day of the legislative session. Ralliers at the demonstration Tuesday afternoon in Frankfort, said they have concerns with bills proposed this legislative session.
So far, there are seven bills proposed that relate to firearms and weapons.
“The goal is to enlighten our legislature that this is very important to us and citizen control, which people call gun control, I call it citizen control, is not what we’re looking for on an amendment that’s protected by the constitution,” Barry Laws said.
Laws is the owner of OpenRange gun range in Oldham County.
At Tuesday’s fiscal court meeting, he introduced a resolution that was one of four different ones presented to the magistrates.
“What we’re looking for is either a resolution or perhaps an ordinance down the road where we can hold the county government accountable if they spend taxpayers funds to do citizen control in the future,” Laws said. “We don’t want any county money spent towards enforcing any laws that we consider against the Second Amendment basically.”
While the resolutions vary in wording, they are similar in that they call on county government to make a statement that it supports the Second Amendment and that it won’t uphold any possible state or federal legislation they believe would infringe on those rights.
“We’re okay right now. I don’t suspect anything coming down the pike right at the moment. The problem is ten years from now, fifteen years from now, twenty years from now when Louisville starts spreading out to Oldham County and a different mindset comes out here that may not be as pro-gun as we are,” Laws said.
Oldham County Judge Executive David Voegele said the county supports Second Amendment rights, but finds the word “sanctuary” concerning.
“We support the Second Amendment but we do not support the sanctuary movement of different municipalities, states, counties, whatever, deciding for themselves which laws they’re going to enforce and which laws they are not,” Voegele said. “Sanctuary implies that people can come here, or there would be some violation that wouldn’t be prosecuted or pursued within our jurisdiction.”
Voegele said part of the magistrates’ roles is to uphold both the United States and Kentucky constitutions.
“We will support any laws passed by the legislature. If we don’t like it, we will do our best to try and change it,” he said.
Voegele said he’s asked the county’s public safety committee to take a look at the four resolutions to see if they can create a resolution that protects the Second Amendment and is “consistent with the values” of Oldham County.