Yesterday, Governor Mike Beebe (D) signed into law House Bill 1503, the Firearm Retailer Protection Bill. This legislation, introduced by state Representative Justin Harris (R-81), will protect lawful firearm retailers from illegal gun sting operations such as those orchestrated by billionaire New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Anti-gun extremist Bloomberg has sent hired agents into other states to attempt deceptive illegal firearm purchases in an effort to blame federally licensed firearm retailers for gun crimes in New York City and around the country. Eighteen states have enacted similar statutes. House Bill 1503, now Act 507, will go into effect 90 days from the Arkansas General Assembly’s adjournment this year.
While the NRA thanks Governor Beebe for signing this important protection into law, another pro-gun reform is now awaiting his approval. Yesterday, House Bill 1819, an important protection to the Emergency Powers statute, passed in the Arkansas Senate on a unanimous 35-0 vote and is now eligible to be signed into law. HB 1819, introduced by state Representative Charlotte Vining Douglas (R-75), is a critical self-defense reform that would prohibit any Arkansas Governor from imposing restrictions on the transfer or transportation of lawfully possessed firearms during a declared State of Emergency.
Please contact Governor Beebe and respectfully urge him to protect your inherent right to self-defense and sign House Bill 1819 into law. His contact information is provided below.
The state Senate also passed Senate Bill 858, which would establish that Arkansas recognize any valid Right-to-Carry permit issued by another state, by an overwhelming 34-1 vote. Introduced by state Senator Jason Rapert (R-35), this important reform would replace the current conditional reciprocity standard. SB 858 is expected to be referred to the House Judiciary Committee, so please stay tuned to www.nraila.org for updates.