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Historic New Tax on Gun Industry Goes Into Effect in California

First-In-The-Nation Measure Will Tax Gun Industry Profits to Fund School Safety and Violence Prevention Efforts Across California

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO, CA — Today, Assembly Bill (AB) 28, the Gun Violence Prevention and School Safety Act, goes into effect in the State of California. Authored by Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel (D - Encino) and signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom, AB 28 is a landmark measure that will tax the gun industry to create a permanent funding source for school safety and gun violence prevention programs in California. The new law will impose an 11 percent excise tax on the sale of guns and ammunition by gun manufacturers and dealers and is expected to generate upwards of $160 million annually to fund school safety and violence prevention programs, including initiatives to prevent mass shootings, bolster firearm investigations, and remove guns from domestic abusers.

“The Gun Violence Prevention and School Safety Act is based on a straightforward premise – that we should prioritize the safety of our kids over gun industry profits,” said Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel (D-Encino). “It’s shameful that gun manufacturers are reaping record profits at the same time that gun violence has become the leading cause of death for kids in the United States. This law will generate $160 million annually to fund critical violence prevention and school safety programs that will save lives and protect communities across the State of California.”

Passing AB 28 was a top national priority for the gun safety movement and the historic effort to pass the law involved intensive advocacy from leading gun safety organizations, including Giffords, Moms Demand Action, Everytown, Brady, and March for Our Lives.

“I am grateful to Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel and thousands of community leaders across California for putting the safety of the people above the gun industry's profits,” said Emma Brown, Executive Director of GIFFORDS. “This example of bold and effective leadership will fund the courageous and lifesaving efforts of violence intervention workers, strengthen the health and safety of California's children, and bolster the enforcement of California's gun laws by keeping guns out of the hands of people who shouldn't have them, including domestic abusers.”

Background on the Gun Violence Prevention and School Safety Act

With the implementation of AB 28, California will continue as a national leader in enacting common sense gun safety laws. The revenue generated by AB 28 would be allocated as follows:

  • $75 million for the California Violence Intervention and Prevention (CalVIP) program, which has proven highly effective at reducing gun violence in communities across California;
  • $50 million for school safety initiatives, including before and after-school programs eligible to receive funding under the federal Bipartisan Safer Communities Act;
  • $15 million for a court-based firearms relinquishment program to safely remove guns from domestic abusers and convicted criminals, as well as others who are subject to civil or criminal restraining orders; and
  • $15 million to help law enforcement improve firearm investigations in communities disproportionately impacted by gun violence.

Since 2020, gun violence has been the leading cause of death for children in the United States. A report by the American Academy of Pediatrics found that the firearm death rate for American children increased by 40 percent between 2018 and 2021.

In addition to its brutal human toll, gun violence also causes enormous economic harm, including fiscal burdens on state and local governments as well as taxpayers. A recent report by Everytown for Gun Safety found that gun deaths and injuries cost California billions annually, much of which is paid for directly by taxpayers every year.  

California has in recent years made significant investments to address the enormous harms from gun violence, including funding for violence intervention initiatives that work to interrupt cycles of shootings, trauma, and retaliation. The state’s investment in these programs, primarily through the California Violence Intervention and Prevention (CalVIP) grant program, has provided a critical lifeline to frontline violence intervention workers and has proven to help reduce shootings and save lives in communities across California.

AB 28 establishes the Gun Violence Prevention and School Safety Fund, enabling California to make long-term investments in a variety of vital initiatives designed to prevent gun violence, enhance school safety, support firearm relinquishment, improve implementation and coordination of gun violence prevention activities, and promote justice and equal access to safety for all Californians.

AB 28 is modeled after a federal tax on firearms that has been in place for over 100 years and helps to fund wildlife conservation efforts. The California law instead will generate funding for programs that have proven effective at mitigating gun violence and protecting students in communities across the Golden State. In so doing, the Gun Violence Prevention and School Safety Act will help stop shootings, save lives, and make California a better and safer home for all its residents. 


Jesse Gabriel proudly represents the San Fernando Valley in the California State Legislature.