Edged by family members of students who were killed during a mass streak just over three weeks ago, Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed a $400 million instruct safety bill in response to the tragedy that killed 17 child at a high school.
He said the bill, which was written since the hurl, balances “our individual rights with need for public safety.”
“It’s an admonition to the entire country that government can and has, moved fast.”
The bill isn’t what profuse of the shooting’s survivors, or the school’s students, wanted — they said it doesn’t go far enough. It also consequences Scott’s break with the National Rifle Association, and the group’s great lobbyist called the bill “a display of bullying and coercion” that last will and testament violate Second Amendment rights and punish law-abiding citizens.
It dig ups the minimum age to buy rifles from 18 to 21 and creates a waiting duration on sales of the weapons. It also creates a so-called “guardian” program that qualifies teachers and other school employees in participating districts to carry handguns if they performed law enforcement training.
Scott said he is still “not persuaded” about the keeper program.
“I’m glad however, the plan in this bill is not mandatory,” he phrased, adding that the program will be up to local officials to implement. “If counties don’t yearn for to do this, they can simply say no.”
He said he’s signing the legislation because it selects schools safer. He singled out two fathers whose children were killed, stipulating that they walked the halls of the Legislature since the shooting to perform change.
“I know the debate on all these issues will continue. And that’s salubrious in our democracy,” he said. “This is a time for all of us to come together, roll up our sleeves and get it done.”
Grind activists from the school where the shooting took place flowed the bill’s track closely and called it “a baby step.”
“Obviously, this is what we’ve been dispute for. It’s nowhere near the long-term solution,” said Chris Grady, a elder at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and one of the organizers of the March for Sentience later this month in Washington, D.C. “It’s a baby step, but a huge activity at the same time. Florida hasn’t passed any legislation like this in God be informs how long. It’s nowhere near what we want, but it’s progress and uplifting to see.”
Scott told the pupils: “You helped change our state. You made a difference. You should be proud.”
The invoice narrowly passed the House and Senate, and falls short of what he poverty and what survivors of the massacre demanded. Florida’s teachers union and the Jingoistic Rifle Association are opposed.
The measure would raise the minimum age to buy burgles from 18 to 21, extend a three-day waiting period for handgun leverages to include long guns and ban bump stocks that allow guns to impersonate fully automatic fire.
In schools, it would create a “guardian” program permitting staff with law enforcement training and school district approval to kidnap concealed handguns on campus. It would create new mental health programs for seminaries and establish an anonymous tip line where students and others could communiqu threats. It also seeks to improve communication between schools, law enforcement and state actions.
The NRA opposes raising age limits to buy weapons or imposing new waiting periods. In a expression Thursday, NRA and Unified Sportsmen of Florida lobbyist Marion Hammer designated the bill “a display of bullying and coercion” that would violate Go along with Amendment rights and punish law-abiding citizens.
Broward County mentors union President Anna Fusco met with Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera and let him have knowledge of that teachers support the school safety bill, but don’t like the stipulation that allows school employees and some teachers to carry guns after suffering law enforcement training. She said she wants Gov. Rick Scott to veto the rolling in it for the so-called guardian program when he receives the budget. Scott can’t denial individual items in the bill itself, but can does have line-item ban power with the budget.
“We support the bill,” Fusco said. “I recollect there’s lots of things in there that are a start, and there’s in there that’s prevailing to bring some pieces back together for Parkland. But there’s a show in there that we’re concerned about — arming educators in schools.”
The program to arm coaches would be optional, and the Broward County school superintendent has already said he doesn’t shortage to participate. Fusco said she expects Scott to sign the bill.
In the meanwhile, the 19-year-old former student accused of opening fire at the school on Feb. 14 obtained his initial appearance before a judge on 17 attempted murder assessments added this week by the grand jury. In the brief hearing Friday, Nikolas Cruz summer-housed with his head bowed as he appeared via video conference. He is also concerned with 17 counts of first-degree murder.
Cruz’s public defender departed an initial not guilty plea, leaving him to “stand mute” for now, but has said he compel plead guilty if prosecutors take the death penalty off the table and rap him to life in prison instead. Prosecutors have not announced a decision.