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Local Mayors Urge Washington For Stricter Gun Control Laws

More than 750 mayors signed the letter that was sent to the White House asking for tighter gun laws in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Connecticut.

A coalition of mayors from all over the country, including local leaders from Martinez and Richmond, have put their names on a letter urging Congress and the White House to take action to end gun violence in the country.

The letter was written by the more than 750 members of Mayors Against Illegal Guns and was sent to President Obama Wednesday in the wake of the Connecticut school shooting last week.

In the letter, the group urges the White House and Congress to require all gun owners to pass a criminal background check, remove high capacity weapons from the streets and make gun trafficking a federal crime.

It also urges the president to appoint an ATF director and prosecute people who try to purchase firearms when they know they aren't eligible to do so.

You can read the entire letter here.

Concord Mayor Dan Helix says that he was not contacted to sign the letter or made aware it by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, but that he has "no problems with stricter gun regulations, especially in view of the tragedy in Newtown."

Martinez Mayor Rob Schroder said he has been a member of the group for more than five years. He also owns three rifles and a handgun.

He said he signed the letter because he likes the comprehensive approach of limiting guns as well as enforcing existing laws.

"They're not just looking at legislation," he said. "They're looking at core issues."

Schroder said he also communicated today with Congressmen George Miller — whose district includes Concord — and Mike Thompson of St. Helena to support their efforts to quell gun violence. Thompson was recently named as the head of a gun violence task force.

What do you think of the efforts to enforce more rigid gun laws? Should Concord leaders support it? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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