The following pro-gun bills were signed into law by Governor Bob McDonnell (R) and will go into effect on July 1, 2013:
A House substitute to Senate Bill 1335, patroned by state Senator Mark D. Obenshain (R-26), passed in the Senate by a 32-8 vote after its approval in the House of Delegates by 76-23 vote. The House substitute to S.B. 1335 protects the confidentiality of all concealed handgun permit (CHP) holders in Virginia. S.B. 1335 was signed into law on March 20.
Senate Bill 1363, patroned by state Senator Jill H. Vogel (R-27), and House Bill 2317, patroned by Delegate Rich Anderson (R-51), are companion bills that provide that residency for members of the Armed Forces shall include both the member’s permanent duty post and the nearby state in which the military personnel resides for the purposes of firearms purchases. Drafted by the NRA, S.B. 1363 and H.B. 2317 passed unanimously in the state Senate and House of Delegates. S.B. 1363 was signed into law on March 20 and H.B. 2317 was signed into law on March 16.
A substitute to House Bill 1582, patroned by Delegate Mark L. Cole (R-88), passed by an 81-18 vote in the House of Delegates and by a 34-6 vote in the Senate. The final version of this bill permits armed security officers licensed by the Department of Criminal Justice Services to carry firearms onto private or religious school property if the officer is hired by the private or religious school to provide protection to students and employees. This bill also prohibits the Board of Social Services from adopting any regulations that would prevent a child day center from hiring an armed security officer. H.B. 1582 was signed into law on March 16.
On April 3, the Virginia General Assembly will reconvene for one day to consider amendments to the following bills submitted by Governor Bob McDonnell:
House Bill 1833, patroned by Delegate L. Scott Lingamfelter (R-31), creates separate sections to address the general criminal prohibition against carrying concealed firearms; the requirements for applying for a concealed handgun permit; the process the circuit court follows in reviewing, issuing, and denying permits; the appeals process procedures for nonresidents to obtain permits; the renewal process disqualifications; and other procedural issues. H.B. 1833 passed unanimously in the House of Delegates and Senate.
Senate Bill 1378, patroned by state Senator Thomas A. Garrett (R-22), increases penalties for individuals who knowingly assist prohibited persons in illegally obtaining firearms. S.B. 1378 passed in the House of Delegates by an 84-11 vote after passing unanimously in the Senate.
Thank you to all NRA members who stood up for freedom and contacted their state legislators during this legislative session, and thank you to Governor McDonnell for signing multiple pro-gun measures into law.