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California lawmakers consider range of gun controls

SACRAMENTO — California lawmakers promised Tuesday to move cautiously as they consider tighter restrictions on handguns, assault rifles and ammunition purchases, proposals that would add to state regulations already among the toughest in the nation.

The chairmen of the Assembly and Senate public safety committees said during a joint legislative hearing that lawmakers will seek consensus as they look for ways to improve gun safety after recent mass shootings, particularly the Newtown, Conn., school massacre.

Proposed legislation includes taxing ammunition sales, outlawing possession of various weapons, and banning devises that allow rapid reloading.

"If there are legislative remedies, we want it to be effective and not divisive," said Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco, chairman of the Assembly committee.

The hearing came after New York approved the nation's toughest gun controls earlier this month by tightening an existing ban on assault-style rifles and prohibiting large-capacity ammunition magazines, among other changes.


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