The North Carolina General Assembly’s short session is well underway, with substantial progress made on efforts to improve our Right to Keep and Bear Arms in the Tar Heel State. This week, the Senate passed House Bill 843, sending it to Governor Bev Perdue for her approval. Additionally, the Senate Judiciary II Committee considered House Bill 111 yesterday, passed it unanimously and sent this legislation to the Senate Finance Committee where it now awaits a hearing.
House Bill 843 makes substantial changes to the North Carolina Emergency Management Act by adding critical language to the section of North Carolina statute that deals with what restrictions may be imposed during a declared state of emergency. Specifically, this bill states that the restrictions section “does not authorize prohibitions or restrictions on lawfully possessed firearms or ammunition.” This means that, if there is a declared state of emergency due to natural disasters or other problems that create a state of disarray and unrest that requires emergency procedures to be implemented by a government entity, the rights of law-abiding gun owners will no longer be subject to possible suspension. The Senate added this critical language in the Senate Judiciary I Committee, and HB 843 then passed in the full Senate on Tuesday, June 5, on a 49-0 vote. The House concurred with the Senate language the following day, by a vote of 113 to 1, and HB 843 now awaits action by Governor Bev Perdue (D).
House Bill 111 would allow law-abiding gun owners who have a Concealed Handgun Permit (CHP) to carry a concealed firearm into most restaurants that serve alcohol for on-premises consumption. North Carolina is one of only five states that completely prohibits an individual who lawfully carries a concealed firearm for personal protection from carrying it into restaurants where alcohol is sold. This bill is critical if North Carolina is going to join the vast majority of the country in trusting permit holders to carry their firearms in such places. In addition, HB 111 amends the law passed last year in House Bill 650 (previously reported on here) that imposed restrictions on prohibiting CHP holders from carrying firearms in parks under the control of local governments. Because some local governments have gone beyond what HB 650 allowed, HB 111 was amended to impose tighter restrictions on these governments. If enacted, this bill would restrict local governments from prohibiting lawfully carried concealed firearms in such places as greenways, designated biking or walking paths, certain open areas and fields, as well as other areas. An NRA representative spoke in favor of HB 111, and the Senate Judiciary II Committee passed it on a voice vote. This bill now resides in the Senate Finance Committee, where we hope it will be considered and passed in the near future. The NRA-ILA would like to thank Senator Buck Newton (R-11), who has been working tirelessly to promote HB 111.
|Please take a moment to thank members of the Senate Judiciary II Committee for passing H111, and urge them to continue to support this critical reform. Committee member contact information can be found by clicking here.|