Tucson City Council Votes to Stop Destroying Guns Seized by Police

Destroying functioning firearms is no different than burning money. (Photo: Associated Press)

Destroying guns is like burning money, why in the heck would anyone ever do it? Right?

I mean, that’s common sense! But as it’s often said, the problem with common sense is that it’s not that common, especially when we’re talking about elected officials.

Tucson city leaders, for example, ordered the destruction of firearms seized and recovered by police for at least a decade before they officially ended the policy this week.

The seven Democrats on the city council voted 4-3 Wednesday to stop not because they saw the error of their ways — but because they were forced to do so.  That’s right, the estimated $100,000 the city stood to make off of auctioning firearms to local Federal Firearms Licensees wasn’t enough of a reason (Apparently, the city so awash in taxpayer cash that it doesn’t need an extra $100,000).

What impelled the council to change its mind was a state law that requires cities to sell surplus property to the highest bidder and another law that allows the state attorney general to withhold funding from cities that go rogue.

Had Tucson continued to destroy guns and flout Arizona law, the attorney general could’ve turned off the state-shared revenue spigot to the tune of $57 million.  Yeah, that’s what got the council’s attention.  Don’t follow the law, no money for you!  Of course, even that wasn’t enough to change everyone’s mind.  Remember, the vote was 4-3.  The resolution passed by only one vote!

That means there were three imbeciles who voted that the existing policy of burning money and breaking the law was the right thing to do.

“I couldn’t make myself vote ‘yes.’ I think it is wrong in every way, shape and form,” said Councilwoman Regina Romero, according to Tucson.com.

She was joined by fellow chuckleheads Steve Kozachik and Karin Uhlich, who also voted “no.”

State Rep. Mark Finchem was the one who blew the whistle on this whole ordeal last year after he found out, by searching city records, that police had allegedly destroyed a gun worth more than $10,000.  It was probably the last straw.  He then asked Attorney General Mark Brnovich to investigate.

“The city of Tucson flagrantly violated state statutes and deprived the taxpayers of the opportunity to obtain a fair-market value of a public asset,” the Finchem, a Republican said in a news release in 2016.

Records show that since 2013, the Tucson Police Department has destroyed 4,280 firearms.  Most were recovered during criminal investigations although some were also turned in by their owners.  Estimates put the retail value of those guns at around $600,000.  Conservatively speaking, the auction to FFLs would yield $100,000 for the city.

While the insanity has been put to rest for now, it may not last too long.  The city council has plans to file a lawsuit against SB 1487, the law that gives the A.G. the power to withhold state funding from rogue cities.  If members can secure that state-shared revenue, there’s a good chance they’ll revert back to their old ways.



About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 10 comments… add one }
  • Altoid September 9, 2017, 12:05 am

    I moved to Tucson in the mid 70s. It was a good conservative town at the time. I then moved to northern Nevada for about fifteen years after which I returned to Tucson in 2007. Tucson went from a friendly cowtown to a bastion of left wing ideologues in as little as fifteen years. Property and sales taxes went through the roof while the quality of everything from education to the quality of the streets to the quality of life in general went straight to the gutter. Now there are gang problems, illegal immigrant issues, hotrods and motorcycles racing up and down the streets of residential neighborhoods and the cops do nothing. This kind of BS would have never been tolerated in the 70s.
    Wife and I were going to retire there, but no way now. Soon as we can get out, we’re gone.
    Advice to anyone thinking of moving there – don’t. Most other towns in AZ seem to be ok. Tucson has been trashed by leftists.

  • The Equalizer September 8, 2017, 10:46 pm

    How long will it take for Constitutional patriots to begin exterminating these commie pinkos? Systematic, surgical “eliminations” – done one at a time – will solve all of these “problems”.

  • Abner T September 8, 2017, 1:33 pm

    The three stooges part amazes me… that they would vote against this cash cow turning some collectibles over to law-abiding citizens. But, then again, “Stupid is as stupid does…”

  • ron September 8, 2017, 12:22 pm

    Thar’s MONEY in them thar guns!!!!

  • missourisam September 8, 2017, 12:21 pm

    The gun destroy policy was in effect as far back as the mid sixties in Tucson. As I understand it was initiated by an anti gun police chief named Bernard L. Garmire. I do know that he considered the NRA a subversive organization.

  • MikeB September 8, 2017, 11:44 am

    So now the city council is going to waste more taxpayer money by filing a lawsuit against the state and SB 1487. Well the citizens of Tucson voted these idiots into office so I guess they’re happy with them wasting their hard earned tax dollars.

  • JS September 8, 2017, 9:46 am

    The wife and I had talked of moving to Tucson, but after reading this, I question whether there are way too many liberals running the city. I like the state and it’s gun friendly laws though.

    • LM September 8, 2017, 11:28 am

      Yes…….Any other area of Arizona except Tucson. I lived there a couple of years ago, it’s just become another border town. They had armed security guards at the doors of the grocery stores!

    • John L September 8, 2017, 12:22 pm

      Tucson is a nice town. Kind of liberal, (college town effect), but gun laws are controlled by the state. All cities in AZ are prohibited from passing any law that goes against state law. Arizonan for 62 years. It is a great place to live as long as you can take the heat.

    • missourisam September 8, 2017, 12:25 pm

      You have the liberal situation in Tucson right. The city of Tucson has the lowest paid police department in the state, the poorest fire protection in many years, but they can spend millions on a street car that only runs a few blocks and that no one rides.

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