Second Sanctuary

Prestonsburg Mayor Les Stapleton, center, reads a statement announcing the city’s support of Floyd County becoming a Second Amendment Sanctuary. Council members Don Willis and Brittainy Branham are also pictured.

The Prestonsburg City Council approved a resolution on Monday in support of the Floyd County becoming a Second Amendment Sanctuary.

The resolution, which was unanimously approved, does not mention the Second Amendment specifically.

It contains two paragraphs, one explaining that the council swore an oath to support the Constitution and that the city has “all intentions of staying true to the entirety of the Constitution and all of its amendments. The second paragraph reaffirms that statement.

“We, the People of Prestonsburg, Kentucky through this resolution hereby declare our rights, our freedom, and our liberty as guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States of America, will be protected,” it states.

Mayor Les Stapleton explained what the resolution was about, reading a statement during a meeting.

“I will tell you what this involves,” he said. “This involves the Second Amendment sanctuary county or cities and we have diligently looked into this,  discussions and everything else. Again, where it’s such a small town, we run into it all the time. So, the city, we, as administration, want to make a statement, basically.”

The statement explained that city officials have received “concerned comments” on the city’s stance on the Second Amendment sanctuary county or cities.

“The resolution we are passing is in support of the county to become a Second Amendment Sanctuary County,” Stapleton read. “We are passing this resolution to reaffirm our dedication to our duty for our citizens and our resolve to adhere to our constitutional oath that we committed to when we took our offices.”

He explained that with the oath, council members swore to support the U.S. Constitution and the Kentucky Constitution.

“We want the citizens of Prestonsburg to know that we do and will uphold our Constitution and all its amendments,” Stapleton read. “It is our understanding that the Floyd County Fiscal Court will be voting on the Second Amendment Sanctuary tomorrow evening at their meeting. Prestonsburg will support the county in their decision to become a Second Amendment Sanctuary County. Should there be issues arise, our council will meet and take the issue up at that time.”

The action came the night before the Floyd County Fiscal Court was scheduled to consider a resolution designating Floyd County as a Second Amendment Sanctuary county. Similar resolutions have been approved in numerous counties across the state as statements against stricter gun laws.

If the resolution is approved, it will have no binding effect of law. It will just be stating that the Floyd County Fiscal Court supports the Second Amendment.

Floyd County Judge-Executive Robbie Williams reported last week that county officials have been getting calls of support as well as “pushback” from people opposing the measure. He said he “had to basically tell my magistrates not to take any more calls” from people opposing the measure.

“We’re getting pushback both ways. We’re getting phone calls,” he said last week. “I mean, I had to basically tell my magistrates not to take any more calls from these folks. We’ve got folks calling from Frankfort and Lexington, Louisville, different places in Kentucky, and they don’t want us to sign the resolution. They’re saying we’ll have blood on our hands, and just things that, really, doesn’t make any sense to me. So, we just, I just basically told the magistrates not to, we don’t need to respond to those folks. We don’t need to respond.”

He said he hopes the resolution, if approved, would send a message to legislators in Frankfort.

“It sends a message to Frankfort. We’re unified in our stance and we will oppose any attempt to infringe on our Second Amendment rights, but I am for common sense gun laws,” he said.

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