Sabattus selectmen to weigh new gun ordinance

Posted April 01, 2013, at 5:56 a.m.
Last modified April 01, 2013, at 10:49 a.m.

SABATTUS, Maine — The resident who a month ago unsuccessfully proposed the town adopt an ordinance requiring every household own a gun will be back in front of selectmen Tuesday with a new proposal.

This time it’s an ordinance that says the town won’t restrict gun ownership and only encourages every head of household to own a gun and ammunition.

David Marsters’ proposal starts:

“The Town of Sabattus shall pass no ordinance or policy restricting the residents from the lawful right to bear arms; a right protected by Second Amendment to our United State Constitution and the Constitution of the State of Maine.”

In early March, selectmen voted down a proposal by Marsters that would have required gun ownership. He was looking for selectmen’s approval to put the measure on the June town warrant, leaving it to a townwide vote.

Marsters, a retired police officer, said at the time the provision would protect the safety of the town and potentially reduce crime.

Police Chief Anthony Ward opposed it, in part out of concern it could make residents a target for theft.

Town Manager Andrew Gilmore said Friday that he had concerns about the new proposal. As written, it could prevent selectmen from restricting town employees from carrying guns on the job.

Selectmen will take it up 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.