4-9-13 W.Va. gun debate ensnares ‘home rule’ proposal

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The gun debate is crossing paths with a bid to grant more local control to West Virginia cities and towns.

A Senate-approved measure awaiting a final House vote would continue what’s been declared a successful experiment with home rule.

A pilot program has allowed four of West Virginia’s largest cities to cut red tape, reduce blight and improve their finances on their own. The pending bill would allow additional cities and towns to apply to participate.

But the bill has stalled as the session enters its final week. Delegate Patrick Lane has proposed adding language that would repeal gun control ordinances in a handful of cities including Charleston.

The Kanawha County Republican helped the House pass a stand-alone repeal bill last month. But that has since idled in the Senate.

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