Two Democratic bills were effectively killed for this session in two different Montana House committees.
The bigger disappointment is the defeat of ✔HB 718, an extreme risk protection order bill that allowed for the temporary seizure of firearms from individuals deemed a danger to themselves or others - a practice that has the support of 89% of the American people, and a key tool in the fight against firearm suicide.
“We hold the dubious distinction in Montana being number one in the nation in regards to completed suicides,” said Zoe Barnard, administrator of Addictive & Mental Disorders Division. “A bill that looks like this one did has successfully reduced suicide by firearm in both Indiana and Connecticut.”
According to the DPHHS, Montana consistently has one of the highest rates of suicide in the nation.
The majority of suicides in the state involved firearms.
The House Judiciary committee nevertheless voted 11-8 on party lines to table the bill.
Another piece of legislation being graded by LEAP Forward, ✔ HB 646, was tabled by the Committee on Taxation. It would have provided a tax credit for the purchase of gun safes.