Portantino Comprehensive Gun Safety Bill Passes State Senate Floor

Wednesday, May 24 2023

For Immediate Release: May 24, 2023

Contact: Lerna Shirinian, (818) 409-0400


Portantino Comprehensive Gun Safety Bill Passes State Senate Floor

Sacramento, CA – Senate Bill 368, authored by Senator Anthony J. Portantino (D – Burbank), passed the Senate Floor today.  SB 368 is a commonsense and comprehensive gun safety effort that would expand and strengthen firearm ownership prohibition laws and create additional responsibilities for commercial gun stores. A significant provision in the bill was inspired by common sense gun safety advocates from the City of Burbank.

“Data tells us that households with firearms have a higher risk of suicide and accidental firearm injuries,” stated Senator Portantino. “There is currently no review process for people coming off the prohibited gun owner list. Additionally, there are many offenses that make a person incapable of safely owning a gun.  An easier path to gun storage and thorough risk assessment will make California safer.”

Currently, licensed retailers and law enforcement agencies are not required to accept and store firearms during a mental health crisis. There are also certain firearm misdemeanors that do not currently fall under the 10-year prohibition of firearms category and the Department of Justice does not have a process for evaluating individuals who may or may not need an extension of a 10-year gun prohibition. In addition, many gun stores try to attract new customers by holding “opportunity drawing,” or raffles, for various firearms accessories.

SB 368 would:

  • Require a licensed firearms dealer to accept the storage of a firearm transferred by an individual to prevent an attempted suicide; licensed retailers may also store firearms for other lawful reasons outside of mental health crises.
  • Prohibits a licensed firearms dealer from offering an opportunity to win an item of inventory in a raffle and would except from this prohibition nonprofit organizations under certain circumstances;
  • Those on the 10 year list can have extended time of additional 10 years if there is an additional violation.
  • Requires the Department of Justice to create an evaluation process to determine whether an extension of a 10-year prohibition is warranted, as well as provide notice and opportunity to be heard to the person, and establish a process for the person to appeal any extension of the prohibition instituted by the department.

“SB 368 is a much needed strategy to help prevent suicide and save lives,” stated Margot Bennett, Executive Director of Women Against Gun Violence. Suicides make up three in every five gun deaths in the U.S. and suicide by firearm is almost always deadly – 9 out of 10 firearm suicide attempts result in death. We are thankful to Senator Portantino for getting this important public safety measure off the Senate Floor.”

Senator Portantino has long been a champion of common sense gun reform policies. During his time in the Assembly, he successfully banned the open carry of handguns and rifles in California and as Senator, he raised the firearm purchase age in California to twenty-one. The Senator has authored legislation related to firearms storage and gun purchase safeguards, as well as a legislation that reduces the number of firearms an unlicensed individual is annually able to sell and the frequency with which they are able to sell.  Most recently, he authored legislation aimed at preventing tragic schools shootings and a major gun reform measure that offers a new tool to combat the rise in gun violence and save lives – a private right of action.