The Liberty Justice Center argues that the restrictions violate a recent state law protecting the right to bear arms, according to a press release it issued.
Nebraska passed Legislative Bill 77 into law in April. Among other things, it adopted constitutional carry statewide and revoked local governments’ ability to regulate firearms.
“Despite this prohibition, the mayors of Omaha and Lincoln issued executive orders banning all firearms from city property, including public parks and sidewalks,” the release said. “Omaha’s City Council also passed ordinances banning ‘ghost gun’ parts and manufacturing, as well as bump stocks. In addition, the Lincoln City Council has not repealed Lincoln’s many ordinances regulating weapons.”
The Liberty Justice Center filed its lawsuits to challenge these orders and ordinances, arguing that they should be nullified under state law.
The lawsuits come after an opinion by Nebraska Attorney General Michael Hilgers published last week that said state law trumps the mayors’ executive orders. He also said bans on carrying firearms in public places like parks, trails, and sidewalks violate the Second Amendment.
The Liberty Justice Center is representing the Nebraska Firearms Owners Association in these lawsuits. The nonprofit organization represents over 10,000 firearm owners in the state.
NFOA offers its members and non-members firearm education, training, and resources on safe firearm use. It also advocates for gun rights in the state.
“The State of Nebraska enacted a law that protects the right to bear arms statewide,” Jacob Huebert, president of the Liberty Justice Center, said. “That law says that local governments can’t regulate firearms. The mayors of Omaha and Lincoln have defied state law with their executive orders, and we look forward to seeing those orders and other city firearms regulations struck down.”
Patricia Harrold, President of the Nebraska Firearms Owners Association, praised the Liberty Justice Center for its efforts.
“We are proud to stand beside the Liberty Justice Center to defend Nebraskans’ rights, our state laws, and the Constitution,” Harrold said.
The Liberty Justice Center filed NFOA v. Lincoln in the District Court of the Third Judicial District, Lancaster County, Nebraska, and NFOA v. Omaha in the District Court of the Fourth Judicial District, Douglas County, Nebraska.
It filed both cases on December 18, 2023.