H.B. 508 and S.B. 445 Would Allow Out-of-State Special Interests Groups to Sue Tennessee Cities That Enforce or Adopt Local Solutions to Gun Violence, at Taxpayers’ Expense
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today released the following statement after both the Senate Judiciary Committee and House Civil Justice Subcommittee voted to advance a dangerous pair of bills (S.B. 445 and H.B. 508) that allow out-of-state special interests groups and trial lawyers to sue Tennessee cities that attempt to enforce or adopt solutions to reduce gun violence in their communities, unnecessarily punishing local officials for trying to do their jobs.
These bills would also require the courts to award out-of-state groups the greatest possible amount of attorney’s fees, court costs , actual damages or three times the attorney’s fees. All costs and damages being paid at the expense of taxpayers. Additionally, H.B. 508 and S.B. 445 would force Tennessee cities and towns to allow guns into government offices, certain recreational facilities and other public buildings unless the implemented expensive security systems.
STATEMENT FROM LINDA MCFADYEN-KETCHUM, VOLUNTEER WITH THE TENNESSEE CHAPTER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“I am disheartened that our lawmakers voted to advance two bills that would ultimately punish Tennesseans for seeking and employing solutions to reduce gun violence in our communities. Plain and simple, H.B. 508 and S.B. 445 would allow out-of-state special interests groups to pocket taxpayers’ dollars while punish our officials for trying to address the gun violence that kills over 90 Americans and injures hundreds more everyday. The unprecedented damages award will encourage frivolous lawsuits that will our force cities and towns to incur tremendous litigation expenses – all at the taxpayers expense. Tennesseans have a right to self-determination when it comes to battling gun violence, and we will not allow others to intimidate our localities and local leaders. We urge our lawmakers to stand with us and oppose these costly bills.”