Georgia town mulls requiring gun ownership

March 8, 2013 at 12:06 PM

NELSON, Ga., March 8 (UPI) -- Households in Nelson, Ga., population 1,300, may be required to own a firearm if the City Council passes an ordinance now under citizen review.

The council unanimously approved the proposal -- backed by the police chief -- this week and put it before residents to review before taking it up again in April, CNN reported Friday.

If approved, Nelson would be the second town in the state to mandate gun ownership. The other is Kennesaw.

Supporters noted that one police officer patrols Nelson for 8 hours during the day, leaving 16 hours when the community is left unguarded, WSB-TV, Atlanta, reported.

"Basically this is a deterrent ordinance," Councilman Duane Cronic said.

The proposal, he said, would give families the right to protect themselves and their property "without worrying about prosecution for protecting themselves."

Cronic said Nelson's plan was modeled after a law that has been in effect in Kennesaw since 1982.

While the proposed Nelson ordinance requires gun ownership, it does have several exceptions, such as being physically or mentally unable to handle a gun, having religious objections or being a felon, WSB reported.

Nelson Police Chief Heath Mitchell told council members the proposal was a great idea that shows "you're in full support of the Constitution."

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