Scotts Valley moratorium expires, gun stores allowed to open for time being

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif. - New gun shops will now have the chance to open in Scotts Valley.

In 2015 a moratorium was put in place by the City Council which banned the opening of new gun stores until new rules and guidelines were recommended to the council. That moratorium expired in September.

At a city council meeting Wednesday night, the Scotts Valley Police Chief and City Council members went over new recommended rules, presented by Chief Walpole Jr., for anyone looking to open a gun store in the city.

"The city council considered three options presented by the police chief and we ended up agreeing unanimously to approve all three of those options," says Scotts Valley City Council Member Jack Dilles.

The three options included; maintaining the existing ordinance, which requires security cameras and alarm systems in all firearms dealers stores. Second, to authorize the police chief to do security inspections of gun stores, and impose recommended safety measures as necessary along with having guns locked at night. Thirdly, each new store would have to get a conditional use permit.

"Ultimately the conditional use permit that would allow the store to be in place in Scotts Valley would either be approved or not approved by the planning commission, and that could be appealed to the city council if someone wanted to do that," says Dilles.

There is currently only one gun store open in Scotts Valley after two have closed their doors in recent months. Perry Ralston, the owner of Perry's Sporting Goods says he follows every law that has already been put into place.

"The security measures in here are to the extreme. We've got bars on the windows, steel door, cameras completely exclusively completely around the building all around the building. Our alarm system is top notch, its internet hardwire wi-fi it's all of it. You name it it's under control."

Ralston also says making things harder for gun shops to open could discourage the public from legally buying guns.

"Now people are going to get discouraged and sell their guns to each other without going through the legal status. Is that going to be good? When you force people's hands to break the law, you're only making it worse."

Scotts Valley resident, Martin says he's happy with the decision to put more regulations on gun stores, "I feel like the council was really receptive to new gun store regulations and the council looked at recommendations that the community put forward and kind of suggested their concerns and I think it's going to work out great for the community."

Council members tell us no one has shown interest in opening up any new shops in Scotts Valley yet.

There is now about a 60 day period to work out any kinks before the new gun store ordinance is put into place.

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