Washington, DC–Below is a statement by Tom Cochran, CEO and Executive Director of The United States Conference of Mayors, on today’s confirmation of Steve Dettelbach as ATF Director:
“This is a week of real progress in our efforts to reduce gun violence in this country. Yesterday members of Congress, mayors, law enforcement leaders, survivors and advocates were on the White House lawn to recognize the passage of bipartisan gun safety legislation for the first time in nearly 30 years. Today the U.S. Senate confirmed Steve Dettelbach as Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the agency’s last permanent director was confirmed in 2013. These two actions position the federal government as a stronger partner to mayors, police chiefs and other leaders as they work to make our cities safer from the scourge of gun violence.
“The Conference of Mayors strongly supported Steve Dettelbach’s confirmation. We sent a letter urging his confirmation signed by more than 100 bipartisan mayors to the Senate last spring and unanimously adopted a resolution calling for his confirmation at our annual meeting last month. We look forward to working with Director Dettelbach in the days and months and years ahead.
“While these two actions are a good start, we cannot rest on our laurels as there is still much work to do. ATF needs to be adequately funded so that it can be a strong law enforcement agency. And Congress needs to build on the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act and strengthen the background check system through Senate passage of H.R. 8, the Bipartisan Background Check Act, and H.R. 1446, the Enhanced Background Checks Act; passage of a ban on semi-automatic assault weapons and large-capacity magazines, and other needed legislation. Mayors are committed to doing everything possible to make this happen.”