Please Contact the Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee Today!
On Monday, February 2, House Bill 1215 was passed by the Arkansas House by a 73-21 vote (with 5 not voting and 1 voting present). The bill has been assigned to the Senate Judiciary Committee where it is pending action.
HB1215, sponsored by State Representative Barry Hyde (D-40), would dramatically increase the potential penalties a municipality may levy for the “unsafe discharge of a firearm.”
This legislation unfairly singles out violators of discharge ordinances to be potentially charged with an unclassified misdemeanor, potential fines up to $10,000 (20 times greater than the law allows for other ordinance violations, and equal to the federal fine for possessing an unregistered machine gun), and potential jail time for as long as 90 days. While there are certainly places where discharging a firearm may not be appropriate, this penalty treats discharge violations in a disproportionate manner. The potential penalty for all other purely municipal ordinance violations--no matter how dangerous the behavior might be--would remain $500 for a first offense.
Please contact the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee TODAY and respectfully urge them to oppose HB1215. Committee members can be contacted through the email addresses listed below or via phone at (501) 682-2902.
State Senator Ed Wilkinson (D-6), Chairman
State Senator Ruth Whitaker (R-3), Vice Chair
State Senator Hank Wilkins, IV (D-5)
State Senator Jim Luker (D-17)
State Senator Sue Madison (D-7)
State Senator Jerry Taylor (D-23)
State Senator Robert Thompson (D-11)
State Senator David Johnson (D-32)