Jackson County leaders declared the county is now a "Second Amendment Sanctuary" last week, but the move is more symbolic than enforceable.
The Jackson County Board of Commissioners adopted a "sanctuary county" resolution Feb. 3 after it was presented to the board by chairman Tom Crow.
The resolution says that the BOC stands behind the sheriff's office if it decides to not enforce "unconstitutional firearms law." It also states that the county will not use any county money to enforce "...laws, orders, mandates, rules or regulations that infringe on the right by the people to keep and bear arms..."
Jackson joins several other counties in Northeast Georgia and around the nation that have adopted similar statements.
The resolution has no legally-binding effect since local laws cannot overrule state or federal laws. Laws regulating firearms, such as mandated background checks to purchase a gun, the prohibition against convicted felons from having a gun and the prohibition against guns on school campuses are still in effect.
County law enforcement officials could choose to ignore those and other existing gun laws, but that could also open the county up to being sued.
The sanctuary gun movement began in 2013, but recently gained steam following last year's win by Democrats in the Virginia statehouse. Democrats in that state vowed to enact stronger gun control measures. The reaction has spread from that state around the nation as gun rights advocates push for their local government to not enforce gun laws that they believe violate their Second Amendment right to bear arms.
The movement is also gaining steam this year due to upcoming elections where some candidates seek to embrace the pro-gun movement for political gain. After presenting the sanctuary county resolution last week, Crow announced his intention to seek re-election to the BOC chairman's seat this year.
One person spoke out against the resolution at the BOC meeting, saying it was just "ploy" and that it will have no impact on the county.