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Tennessee: Comprehensive Pro-Gun Reform Bill Introduced in the Legislature

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Today, February 17, the Tennessee Legislature introduced NRA-drafted House Bill 1668 and companion bill Senate Bill 1768, the Tennessee Gun Owners Improvement Act.  Sponsored by state Representative Judd Matheny (R-47) and state Senator Bill Ketron (R-13), HB 1668/SB 1768 would improve upon the current Tennessee Permit Law by cleaning up redundancies that are found in Federal Law and remove unnecessary restrictions placed on law-abiding citizens. 

HB 1668 would:

  • Allow gun owners to lawfully store firearms in their privately-owned and locked vehicle while parked in publicly accessible parking lots controlled by their employer or a business that they frequent.  The bill would not affect a situation in which firearms were banned from the premises, as a matter of state or federal law, or in which the vehicle had no authority to be on the property in the first place.
  • Strengthen current firearm preemption laws by prohibiting local government entities from banning firearms outside “buildings” under their control or in private vehicles.  It would also fix the local parks provision and eliminate the patchwork of laws across the state by invalidating existing ordinances, rules, or other provisions that would conflict with the state firearm preemption law.
  • Create provisions that would prevent the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) from using the fees charged for background checks as a general revenue source and limit the fees to no more than what it costs to run the background check system.
  • Require TBI to destroy records pertaining to an approved firearm transfer by the end of the business day on which the background check occurred and prohibit the duplication, transfer, or reproduction of such records while moving up the date of issuing permits from 90 days to 45 days.
  • Prohibit public or private landlords from enacting lease clauses that ban firearms from a lessee’s residential or business premises.
  • Repeal the general bans on the carrying of handguns by those with permits in refuges, public hunting areas, or wildlife management areas that are located within the boundaries of a state park or state natural area.
  • Codify the Fraudulent Firearms Prevention Act and stop private sting operations by cronies of anti-gun New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
  • Repeal over-reaching disqualifiers for a carry permit including to those who have had their rights restored, bringing Tennessee in line with current federal standards.
  • Clarify a posting provision for school buildings and grounds from where firearms are banned.

Your NRA will continue to update you on HB 1668 and SB 1768 as they progress through the Tennessee Legislature.

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