KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Knox County Commission on Monday voted against a resolution that would have urged state lawmakers to pass a “red flag” gun law touted by Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee.
Following the mass shooting at Covenant School in Nashville that killed six people, including three children, Lee signed an executive order urging stronger background checks on gun purchases. He proposed an “order of protection” law that would prevent people, who have shown real threat to themselves or others, from purchasing guns.
At the meeting on April 24, the Knox County Commission considered a resolution crafted by graduates of the Knox County Junior Commission Program, in which high school students serve as guests of their district’s commissioners to attend meetings and learn about the local government process.
The resolution would have expressed support for Lee’s proposals, which some lawmakers, like Senate Majority Leader Jack Johnson (R-Franklin), have criticized as a “red flag law.”
Several students from the Junior Commission Program spoke during public comment urging commissioners to support the resolution. Several community members also spoke in opposition to the resolution, arguing that the law would infringe on constitutional rights.
The resolution failed.
Eight commissioners voted against it while two voted in favor. One commissioner was absent.
Commissioners did pass a resolution encouraging the governor to adopt and fund several school security recommendations from Lieutenant Governor Randy McNally such as armed guards and magnetic locks on doors.
While the state legislative session concluded last week, Lee has called for a special session on public safety. His order of protection proposal has already been met with strong opposition from lawmakers.
House Republican leadership put out a statement last week, saying the Caucus would not consider a red flag law at all.