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Gun Violence Prevention Ordinances
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Gun Violence Prevention Ordinances

During the 2021 Colorado legislative session, state lawmakers passed a law to give localities the flexibility to come up with their own ordinances addressing the sale, purchase, or possession of firearms within their jurisdictions (Colorado Senate Bill 21-256) Boulder County is joining other organizations and governments across the United States in raising awareness of gun violence and is working towards the prevention of gun violence here in Boulder County.

The Boulder County Commissioners view these current efforts to curtail gun violence as a continuation of a long-standing commitment that stems from their previous experience, including positions in education and in the state legislature.

Therefore, on August 2, 2022, the Commissioners approved the following local ordinances for Boulder County:

Ordinance No Title
2022-2 An Ordinance Prohibiting the Purchase of Firearms by Anyone Under the Age of Twenty-One
2022-3 An Ordinance Requiring a Waiting Period Prior to the Sale of Firearms
2022-4 An Ordinance Prohibiting the Carrying of Firearms in Sensitive Public Places
2022-5 An Ordinance Prohibiting the sale and purchase of Assault Weapons, Large Capacity Magazines, and Trigger Activators
2022-6 An Ordinance to Regulate the Possession of Unfinished Frames and Receivers, and Unserialized Firearms

To see the full text of each proposed ordinance, please click on the Ordinance No. (above) or go to the County Ordinances page.

Frequently Asked Questions About Boulder County’s New Gun Violence Prevention Ordinances

To whom does Boulder County’s Ordinance apply? Does it apply in the City of Louisville or City of Boulder, which have their own gun safety laws?

Boulder County’s gun violence prevention ordinances apply to the unincorporated areas of the county, and they do not apply to incorporated cities or towns that are within Boulder County such as the City of Boulder or City of Louisville. If you live in an incorporated city or town within Boulder County, the ordinances of that city or town apply to you. For a list of the ten incorporated towns and cities in Boulder County to which the ordinance does not apply and which may have their own separate ordinances, please see https://bouldercounty.gov/government/about-boulder-county/incorporated-municipalities/.

How is the 10-day waiting period in Ordinance No. 2022-3 calculated?

The 10-day waiting period for delivery and taking possession of a firearm in Ordinance No. 2022-3 consists of 10 consecutive calendar days. As an example, if a licensed firearm dealer initiates a background check for a firearm sale on Thursday, September 1, 2022, the purchaser could take possession of the firearm on September 11, 2022, provided that the dealer has received approval for the sale as required by C.R.S. § 18-12-112.5 by September 11, 2022.

Does Boulder County Ordinance No. 2022-5 require me to register or get a certificate for firearms, large capacity magazines, or trigger activators that I owned before the ordinance passed?

No. Boulder County’s Ordinance No. 2022-5 does not prohibit possession of these devices in unincorporated Boulder County. The ordinance prohibits the manufacture, sale, transfer, purchase and import of these devices in the unincorporated areas of the county. Incorporated municipalities within Boulder County may have their own ordinances that apply in their jurisdictions.

How does this ordinance apply to houses of worship that want to permit open or concealed carry on their own property?

Ordinance No. 2022-4 provides that firearms cannot be carried within any property or facility owned or operated by a church, synagogue, mosque, temple, or other places of worship without express permission in writing from the property or facility’s operating authority. What constitutes the “operating authority” for a house of worship is a matter to be determined by the house of worship’s own governing body, and therefore the identity of such authority will be unique to each individual house of worship. For example, one house of worship may elect to leave this determination up to one religious leader, while others may allow a council or group of individuals to make this determination. Individuals wishing to receive permission to carry a firearm in a house of worship should consult with the leaders of the house of worship to ascertain whether and how they can get such permission to carry a firearm within the location. Notably, a person cannot be charged with a violation of Ordinance No. 2022-4 if signage providing notice of the prohibitions on open and concealed carry are not posted conspicuously at all public entrances to the location.

In Boulder County, what constitutes high capacity or large capacity magazine?

Boulder County’s Ordinance No. 2022-5 defines a large capacity magazine as an ammunition feeding device with the capacity to accept more than 10 rounds. Please read the ordinance for additional information.

This is separate from the State of Colorado’s 15-round high capacity magazine limitations found in Colorado Revised Statutes Sections 18-12-301 and 18-12-302. Please see the Colorado Revised Statutes for more information.

Does Ordinance No. 2022-5 regarding assault weapons prevent me from owning an assault weapon or bringing one into areas of unincorporated Boulder County?

Ordinance No. 2022-5 does not prohibit people living in or traveling through unincorporated Boulder County from possessing assault weapons, large-capacity magazines, or rapid-fire trigger activators. Instead, the ordinance prohibits the manufacture, import, purchase, sale or transfer of these devices within unincorporated Boulder County. Under the ordinance, purchases, sales and transfers originating in or being delivered to unincorporated Boulder County are prohibited. The use of the term “import” in this ordinance means to bring one of these devices into unincorporated Boulder County for the purpose of sale or transfer of ownership of the device to another person or entity.

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