COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio Senate committee will hear from a Democrat and a Republican who are sponsoring legislation that would expand background checks for most firearm purchases and create a ``red flag'' law aimed at keeping guns from people viewed as threats to themselves and others.
Sen. Cecil Thomas, a Cincinnati Democrat and member of the Government Oversight and Reform Committee, said in an interview before Tuesday's hearing in Columbus that there's little appetite in the Republican-controlled Legislature to pass substantive guns laws.
Thomas says Republicans likely agreed to Tuesday's hearing because of a mass shooting in Dayton in August that killed nine people.
The shooting prompted Sen. Peggy Lehner, a Dayton-area Republican, to become a co-sponsor for three of Thomas' bills, including those on background check expansion and the red-flag law.
UPDATE 8/28/2019 9:43 P.M.
Republican Gov. Mike DeWine says Ohio should start requiring the entry of certain protection orders and arrest warrants for top-tier, violent crimes into background check systems that help notify law enforcement and gun sellers about potentially dangerous people.
DeWine said Wednesday too much information is missing from those state and federal systems, and that's a safety issue.
He says Ohio is starting work to create a simple, state-funded system for police and courts to add information about warrants and protection orders to the background check systems, and he'll ask lawmakers to make it mandatory.
In the wake of the Dayton shooting that killed nine people this month, DeWine already proposed requiring background checks for nearly all gun sales and allowing courts to restrict firearms access for people perceived as threats.
Republican Gov. Mike DeWine said he is pursuing a "red flag" law in Ohio that would allow guns to be seized temporarily from owners thought to be a threat to themselves or others.
DeWine said his team is trying to come up with a version that could pass the GOP-dominated Legislature, which rejected a similar proposal last year from his predecessor Republican John Kasich.
DeWine was elected with backing from gun-rights advocates but previously indicated that he would support a "red flag" bill if it ensures due process for the owners who could temporarily lose their weapons.
DeWine said he's been particularly concerned by recent attacks on U.S. houses of worship.
Ohio law currently allows for confiscating firearms if civil-protection orders are issued against their owners in domestic-violence cases.
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