However, Omnibus Firearms Bill Passes Senate
In the activity on the floor of the Virginia Senate Wednesday, March 8, there was good news and bad news for law-abiding firearm owners.
First, the bad news: House Bill 162, sponsored by Delegate Scott Lingamfelter (R-31) which would have prohibited businesses from setting policies prohibiting lawfully possessed firearms from being stored in locked vehicles in public parking areas, was re-referred to the Senate Courts of Justice Committee.
In making this Parliamentary maneuver, the Senate ensured that HB 162
would not get a full vote on the Senate floor as the Courts of Justice committee will NOT meet again this session.
To make matters worse, the motion to re-refer this important bill was passed by a voice vote--meaning that law-abiding gun owners have no way of knowing exactly who opposed their right to self-defense!
Nonetheless, we would like to thank the patron of HB 162, Delegate Scott Lingamfelter, for his determination and steadfast defense of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. Please contact Delegate Lingamfelter at firstname.lastname@example.org and thank him for his tireless efforts to further protect freedom in the Commonwealth.
Second, the good news: Also, on the Senate floor Wednesday, House Bill 1577, the Omnibus firearms bill being carried by Delegate Ben Cline, was slightly amended and passed by a vote of 32-8. In its current form, HB 1577 provides that: localities, if they choose to, may only require fingerprints for initial concealed carry permit applications; the State Police will conduct an annual background check on each concealed carry permit holder to ensure eligibility, and the permit will "roll-over" for another year, thus creating a lifetime permit in Virginia (this provision will not become effective until July of 2007); and that armed forces members will have a 90-day grace period to renew their concealed carry permits if they are deployed at the time of their permit expiration.
As several changes have been made to HB 1577, the House of Delegates will have to concur with the bill in its new form. We will continue to keep you informed of any new developments on this measure.
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