Leesburg may follow the example of Loudoun County in prohibiting firearms in town government buildings and town property.
The council will discuss the matter at its Aug. 9 work session after Mayor Kelly Burk found support to add it to a meeting agenda.
According to a staff report, the Virginia State Code provides localities with the authority to restrict individuals from carrying firearms on municipal property. The restriction may apply to possession, carrying or transportation of firearms in government-owned buildings; public parks; recreation or community centers; orin any public street, road, alley, or sidewalk or public right-of-way or any other place of whatever nature that is open to the public and is being used by or is adjacent to a permitted event or an event that would otherwise require a permit.
The code also provides localities with the ability to employ security measures designed to prevent violations of an ordinance, including metal detectors and increased use of security personnel.
Exempt from regulation would be firearms carried by law enforcement, security, or military personnel.
When the Board of Supervisors considered the gun ban this spring, it stirred passions in the community, with meetings drawing out individuals on both sides of the argument. Ultimately, the ban passed on a 6-3 vote along party lines. The City of Alexandria and Arlington and Fairfax counties have adopted similar ordinances.
According to Town Attorney Christopher Spera, if the council directs him to prepare an ordinance with the changes, a public hearing would be scheduled prior to any potential adoption.
Monday’s work session begins at 7 p.m.