A planned gun buyback has been cancelled by a Boulder County, Colo., sheriff because he says the state’s strict new gun laws make the logistics of the Aug. 4 event all but impossible, The Boulder Daily Camera reports.
"The bottom line is what we anticipated doing would still be legal -- but procedurally we can't follow through with it at this time," Sheriff Joe Pelle said this week.
A state law that took effect July 1 requires that all gun-holders submit to a background check. However, the InstaCheck systems (the system used in background checks) are not mobile -- so they can’t be transported to the sheriff’s compound where the buyback was supposed to take place.
"It's not a portable system," Pelle said. "It can't be done at the site."
He continued, saying that the only way the program could work is if they found a licensed dealer who would be willing to host the event. However, he noted, for it to be worth the firearms dealer’s time and space, he’d have to be compensated per transaction, “which become very unproductive.”
The event was planned by the “multi-faith” organization Together Colorado.
"Sheriff Pelle has stood strong for this event, has done tremendous work to make it happen and he is as disappointed as we are,” Sheila Dierks said in an email announcing the event’s cancellation.
The group planned to offer gift cards and sports tickets in return for firearms. Students participating in the program raised nearly $8,000 to purchase the incentives.
Now that money has nowhere to go.
“The idea was to collect guns and then immediately hand them over to the Sheriff's Office for destruction,” The Boulder Daily Camera report adds. “Some of the remnants of the destroyed firearms would then be passed along to Boulder-area metalworking artist Jessica Adams to use for a sculpture aimed at creating gun violence awareness.”
Pelle added that Together Colorado can still do the August buyback -- but only if they pass the required background checks.
“While he said he understands organizers may be disappointed, he said the ‘larger good’ is accomplished by the background check requirement,” the report adds.
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