Oakland County approves $45K gun buyback program

Oakland County has authorized a new gun buyback program that will fund efforts by local cities to hold events where residents can exchange firearms for money.

The new $45,000 program was approved during a Sept. 1 meeting by a 14-4 vote. 

The funding covers the costs for planning, hosting, and administering the events throughout Oakland County. They're scheduled to begin in October.

"We have been working with community groups and local law enforcement agencies for months to find appropriate ways the Board can be part of the solution to reducing gun violence," Comm., Charlie Cavell (D-Ferndale) said. "This pilot program will help us gauge community interest so we can continue well into the future with programming to make our communities a safer place to be."

The program will be voluntary and offers residents a convenient way to dispose of unwanted firearms. Proponents also say buyback programs help reduce gun violence by removing weapons that could be accessible to children.

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The local police departments that have expressed interest in the program include: Southfield, Lathrup Village, Auburn HIlls, Bloomfield Township, Ferndale, Royal Oak, and Berkley.

Ferndale previously held its own gun buyback event in 2018.