SB 501 : The Students’ Bill

Position: Support Status: July 1, 2019: End of session, bill was not passed

The Oregon Democrats have not supported this bill and it was left to die in committee. This omnibus bill was submitted by Oregon's Students for Change, a group of high-school and college students who understand the changes we must make to reduce gun violence. SB 501 was one of the most exciting and effective gun violence prevention bills Ceasefire Oregon has seen.


January 16, 2019: Referred to Judiciary Committee January 14, 2019: Introduced at the request of Students for Change Chief Sponsors: Senator Wagner, Representative Salinas

Requires person to secure permit before purchasing or otherwise receiving firearm. Requirements include:

  • Must be at least 21 years of age.
  • No prior criminal convictions (including no convictions for misdemeanor violence).
  • No restraining orders, or court protective orders (like ERPO).
  • No unlawful use of drugs.
  • Must pass a firearm safety course.
  • The permit is valid for 90 days during which time the permit holder may, within a 30 day period,
    • purchase 20 rounds of ammunition (exception for shooting ranges),
    • purchase one handgun, and
    • purchase one rifle or shotgun.
  • A sheriff may deny a permit to receive a firearm if the sheriff has reasonable grounds to believe that the applicant has been or is reasonably likely to be a danger to self or others, or to the community at large, as a result of the applicant’s mental or psychological state or as demonstrated by the applicant’s past pattern of behavior involving unlawful violence or threats of unlawful violence.
    • Includes a procedure to challenge a denial by a sheriff.
  • Creates procedures for appealing denial of permit. Punishes receipt of firearm without valid permit by maximum of 364 days’ imprisonment, $6,250 fine, or both.
  • Requires person who owns or possesses firearm to secure firearm with trigger or cable lock or in locked container.
    • Punishes failure to secure firearm by maximum of 30 days’ imprisonment, $1,250 fine, or both.
  • Requires person who owns or possesses firearm to report to law enforcement agency loss or theft of firearm within 24 hours.
    • Punishes failure to report loss or theft by maximum of 30 days’ imprisonment, $1,250 fine, or both.
  • Prohibits possession of magazine with capacity to hold more than five rounds of ammunition.
    • Provides that person in possession of such magazine must sell or otherwise dispose of magazine
      within 180 days of effective date of Act.
    • Punishes unlawful possession of magazine capable of holding more than five rounds by maximum of 364 days’ imprisonment, $6,250 fine, or both.
  • Requires criminal background check before transfer of ammunition.
  • Prohibits transfer of firearm by gun dealer or private party until latter of 14 days or Department of State Police has determined that recipient is qualified to receive firearm.

The Students’ Bill would enact policies that researchers find are the most effective and that are the best supported among Americans. This graph from the New York Times charts the plot of effective laws versus laws that are well supported by voters. Proposed legislation in the Students’ Bill includes permit-to-purchase (require gun licenses),  ban sales to violent criminals, report lost or stolen guns, waiting period, high-capacity magazine ban, gun purchase limit, and requiring safety training.