Massachusetts lawmakers have approved several major pieces of legislation, blowing past a midnight deadline in a somewhat chaotic finish to the end of formal meetings in their two-year session.
Among those bills sent to Gov. Deval Patrick in the closing minutes was a major overhaul of the state's gun laws.
The bill would give police chiefs the right to go to court to deny firearms identification cards needed to buy rifles or shotguns to individuals they feel are unsuitable, much like the discretion they currently have over issuing licenses to carry concealed weapons.
Other bills winning final approval would make changes to domestic violence laws, address the state's substance abuse troubles, toughen campaign finance laws, and authorize a sales tax holiday on the weekend of Aug. 16-17.
Patrick has 10 days to sign the bills.