Backers of gun background checks get OK to seek signatures

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Posted at 5:48 AM, Jul 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-23 05:48:03-04

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A gun safety group hoping to change state law to require background checks on virtually all guns sales has received state approval to start collecting petition signatures.

The bipartisan Ohio Ballot Board unanimously voted Monday that the proposal to close loopholes in background checks on gun sales doesn't contain more than a single subject. That certification was necessary before Ohioans For Gun Safety could begin gathering the required 132,887 signatures from registered voters in at least half of Ohio's 88 counties.

The proposal would close a loophole that allows sales without background checks at gun shows and between private individuals.

Should the petition advance, it would first ask Ohio lawmakers to enact universal background checks, with a few exemptions. If lawmakers decline, the petition could be presented directly to voters.