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Conn. gun industry seeks gun access restrictions

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 28, 2013 at 1:03 pm •  Published: January 28, 2013
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Rich Roland, a worker at O.F. Mossberg & Sons Inc., a North Haven gun manufacturer, said banning firearms will not end gun violence.

"They're not getting to the root cause of the problem, and the root cause is on the mental health side," he said. "It isn't the firearm."

The gun industry has historically had a strong presence in Connecticut, dating to the mid-19th century when Colt Patent Fire Arms Manufacturing Co. began operating in Hartford. Several other gun makers do business in Connecticut and appeared at the legislative hearing.

The industry says it supports 7,340 jobs with total wages of $522 million.

Senate President Pro Tem Donald Williams criticized the industry for not doing enough to sell guns that cannot be used by unauthorized people.

"How about marketing firearms from a safety point of view?" he asked. "I have yet to find a significant emphasis on safety in firearms."

The task force on gun violence and children's safety is focusing on gun and ammunition laws, mental health services and school safety. Legislative leaders say they hope to take action before the end of February, though the legislative session adjourns in June.

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Stephen Singer can be reached at http://twitter.com/SteveSinger10