Madison Mayor Bob Conley, a member of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, started the new year by signing a pledge joining Mayors Against Gun Violence.
Separately, Borough Councilman Robert Catalanello, a member of the National Rifle Association, plans to introduce a resolution at the governing body's next meeting urging Congress to use New Jersey's gun laws as the laws for the entire U.S., the mayor said.
The Madison officials are weighing in on gun laws in the wake of the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. Conley announced his pledge and the planned resolution during Madison's reorganization meeting on Tuesday. He said he signed the pledge earlier that day.
Looking back on 2012, "We cannot avoid thinking about the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School," Conley said in his address. "Our hearts go out to families of Newtown, Connecticut, those who lost their children, those whose lives will never by the same as this tragedy unfolded in a quiet town. This served as a reminder of how vulnerable we are and that no one is safe. As a community and a nation we must do all that is possible to end this senseless violence."
Mayors Against Gun Violence is a nationwide effort including mayors Michael Bloomberg of New York and Cory Booker of Newark, and the resolution is expected to be presented at the Jan. 14 Council meeting, Conley said.
"Rob (Catalanello) will be quick to point out that he's a member of the NRA while I'm a member of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence," he said. "We are working together on this because enough is enough."
Whereas: 30,000 Americans across the country are killed every year as a result of gun violence, destroying families and communities in big cities and small towns; and
Whereas: As Mayors, we are duty-bound to do everything in our power to protect our residents, especially our children, from harm and there is no greater threat to public safety than the threat of illegal guns;
Now, therefore, we resolve to work together to find innovative new ways to advance the following principles:
o Punish – to the maximum extent of the law – criminals who possess, use, and traffic in illegal guns.
o Target and hold accountable irresponsible gun dealers who break the law by knowingly selling guns to straw purchasers.
o Oppose all federal efforts to restrict cities’ right to access, use, and share trace data that is so essential to effective enforcement, or to interfere with the ability of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms to combat illegal gun trafficking.
o Keep lethal, military-style weapons and high capacity ammunition magazines off our streets.
o Work to develop and use technologies that aid in the detection and tracing of illegal guns.
o Support all local, state, and federal legislation that targets illegal guns; coordinate legislative, enforcement, and litigation strategies; and share information and best practices.
o Invite other cities to join us in this new national effort.