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PHOENIX — The state of Arizona could impose fines on cities and towns that enforce gun ordinances stricter than the state's own laws.

House Bill 2517, sponsored by Rep. Steve Smith, would impose a civil penalty of up to $5,000 on city and town governments that violate the statute. Smith said he wants the state "to have some teeth" in enforcing the law.

The bill, approved by a House committee, could reignite a battle between municipalities and Arizona. Last year, Republicans passed a law forcing cities to sell, not destroy, guns from buyback programs. Democrats complained that the state objects when the federal government imposes laws on Arizona, but then it does the same to municipalities.

The League of Arizona Cities and Towns opposes the bill. Opponents contend it violates municipal sovereignty.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Associated Press,

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