On February 12, the House Education Committee passed House Bill 1243 on a voice vote, after it was weakened by amendment. As introduced by state Representative Charlie Collins (R-84), HB 1243 sought to allow staff and faculty of a public university, public college or community college, to carry a concealed handgun in the buildings of the institutions where they are employed if they have a valid Concealed Handgun Carry License (CHCL). It would also remove the absolute prohibition of CHCL holders from carrying a concealed firearm into the buildings of a private university or college. Private universities and colleges would still be permitted to establish their own restrictions on CHCL holders.
However, this bill was amended in committee to give public universities and colleges the same discretion as private institutions. While this legislation does not go as far as when it was introduced, it became clear that the amendment was necessary in order for the bill to pass committee. The NRA remains in support of this legislation, as it still represents a clear improvement over the current absolute prohibition of any carrying of concealed firearms by CHCL holders on any university and college campuses.
Please contact your state Representative and urge him or her to support HB 1243, and oppose any further weakening amendments, when it is brought up for consideration on the House floor.