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Tampa Mayor Will Call For City Pension Fund To Dump Gun, Ammo Makers

Daylina Miller
WUSF Public Media
Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn is also considering joining a lawsuit against the state over a law that bans local gun control ordinances.

Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn wants to divest the city's employee pension fund from companies that make guns and ammo.

A recent staff review found that about $300,000 of the more than $800 million pension portfolio is linked to these kind of companies, according to city spokesperson Ashley Bauman. The decision to divest is ultimately up to the seven-member retirement board that oversees Tampa's employee pension fund.

Bauman said city staff will formally make the request for divestment at the board's next meeting on Tuesday. Buckhorn is betting city employees are with him.

"He believes that the majority of city employees stand with the families of the Parklands, the Sandy Hooks, the Columbines, and the hundreds and thousands of other Americans affected by gun violence," he said.

The request for divestment is just one way in which Buckhorn is exploring what he can do for gun violence prevention on a local level, Bauman said.

"The mayor himself is a gun owner," she said. "He doesn't believe we should take away guns, he just thinks it's time for common sense gun legislation and some of these companies perpetuate the problem."

Just yesterday, the city of St. Petersburg joined a lawsuit against the state over a law preventing local gun control ordinances. Buckhorn is still considering joining that lawsuit.

Roberto Roldan is a senior at the University of South Florida pursuing a degree in mass communications and a minor in international studies.
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