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Virginia: New “Special” Firearm Sub-Committee to Meet on Thursday, March 4!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Please Contact Committee Members!

On Thursday, March 4, the new “special” Senate Sub-Committee created to handle all firearm related bills passed by the House of Delegates, will meet at 2 p.m. in the 4th Floor East Conference Room.

State Senator Toddy Puller (D-36) will Chair this new special Sub-Committee and be joined by her fellow rabid anti-gun colleagues; State Senator Marsh (D-16), State Senator Louise Lucas (D-18), and State Senator Janet Howell (D-32). The sole Republican member of the Sub-Committee will be State Senator Frederick Quayle (R-13). Please contact the members of this sub-committee and urge them to request a fair hearing on firearm bills. Contact information can be found by clicking on their name.

Also, please contact Senate leadership and your State Senator and tell them you oppose the formation of this blatantly anti-gun sub-committee.  Urge them to disband this sub-committee and allow these bills to receive fair consideration.  You can find contact information for your State Senator by clicking here. Contact information for Senate Leadership can be found below.

Senator Richard Saslaw (D-35), Senate Majority Leader
(804) 698-7535
District35@senate.virginia.gov 

Senator Henry Marsh, III (D-16), Courts of Justice Committee Chair
(804) 698-7516
District16@senate.virginia.gov

Listed below are the bills, which the special Senate Sub-Committee is expected to hear:

House Bill 26, authored by Delegate Thomas Wright (R-61), would prohibit the Clerk of the Court from requiring an applicant for a concealed handgun permit to provide any documentation or information not authorized by the law or prescribed by Virginia State Police.

House Bill 52, sponsored by Delegate Mark Cole (R-88), would allow a court to waive a $25 dollar fine upon presentation of the permit to the court, if a person fails to display his concealed carry permit when requested by a law-enforcement officer.

House Bill 79, sponsored by Delegate R. Lee Ware (R-65), would prohibit the Clerk of Court from publicly disclosing concealed handgun permit application information unless the permittee has provided written consent for the release of the application or information. The information would still be available to law-enforcement acting in the performance of their duties.

House Bill 108, also introduced by Delegate Cole (R-88), would prohibit agents of localities or localities themselves from participating in “gun buy-backs” unless the governing body of such a locality authorizes such a program. The locality would then have the option of selling the firearms by auction to a federally licensed dealer (FFL) or disposing of the firearm in any other appropriate manner.

House Bill 109, also sponsored by Delegate Mark Cole (R-88), would repeal the statute which allows the governing body of any county to require the sellers of pistols and revolvers to furnish the Clerk of the Circuit Court with the name and address of the purchaser, date of purchase and the number, make, and caliber of the gun.

House Bill 171, authored by Delegate Brenda Pogge (R-96), would prohibit property owners, employers, or a business entity from establishing or enforcing any policy prohibiting a person who may lawfully possess a firearm from storing a firearm in a locked motor vehicle in a publicly accessible parking lot.

House Bill 236, sponsored by Delegate Bill Janis (R-56), would remove the prohibition imposed by localities on hunting within a half-mile of subdivisions.

House Bill 854, sponsored by Delegate Will Morefield (R-3), would provide immunity from civil prosecution if someone uses force, including deadly force, to defend themselves and their loved ones if attacked in their home by someone who has entered unlawfully.

House Bill 870, sponsored by Delegate Benjamin Cline (R-24), would repeal the language that allows localities to fingerprint applicants for a concealed handgun permit.    

House Bill 885, sponsored by Delegate Cliff Athey (R-18), would allow any person who may lawfully posses a firearm and is carrying a handgun while in a personal, private vehicle or vessel to keep the firearm secured in a container or compartment in the vehicle or vessel.

House Bill 1092, sponsored by Delegate Anne B. Crockett-Stark (R-6), would give retired law-enforcement the ability to carry a concealed handgun without a permit.

House Bill 1191, introduced by Delegate H. Morgan Griffith (R-8), would allow a circuit court judge to authorize the Clerk of Court to issue concealed handgun permits in instances where the application is complete, the background check does not indicate that the applicant is disqualified, and, after consulting with the local sheriff or police department, there are no other questions or issues surrounding the application.

House Bill 490, sponsored by Delegate Scott Lingamfelter (R-31), would direct the Department of State Police, in cooperation with the Secretary of Public Safety, to develop a plan to allow the State Police to issue lifetime concealed handgun permits to Virginia residents. The Department and the Secretary shall submit the plan, and any recommended legislative changes to implement the plan, to the Chairmen of the House Committee on Militia, Police, and Public Safety and the Senate Committee for Courts of Justice by October 15, 2010.

House Bill 1217, sponsored by Delegate Lynwood Lewis (D-100), would allow local school boards to offer firearm safety education programs in the elementary grades. To assist local school boards opting to provide such instruction, the Board of Education must establish a standardized program of firearm safety education for students in the elementary school grades to promote the protection and safety of children. The bill requires that the program objectives incorporate, among other principles of firearm safety, accident prevention and the rules of the National Rifle Association's Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program. Local school boards offering the program must comply with Board curriculum guidelines and integrate the instruction in appropriate subject areas, if feasible, to ensure that every elementary school student receives instruction in firearm safety education.

House Bill 1070, sponsored by Delegate Clay Athey (R-18), would provide that a person who has a valid concealed handgun permit may not be barred from carrying a concealed handgun in any place or facility designated or used by the Governor, any political subdivision of the Commonwealth, or any other governmental entity as an emergency shelter or for the purpose of sheltering persons.

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