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Tennessee: School Security Act of 2013 Passes Out of Committee

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Yesterday, the House Civil Justice Committee considered House Bill 6, the School Security Act of 2013, and by a voice vote, passed HB 6 in committee.  Sponsored by state Representative Eric Watson (R-22), HB 6 was amended to allow a person employed or assigned to a Local Education Agency to possess and carry a firearm on the grounds of that school if they are current or former law enforcement.  The individual would also be required to have a Tennessee Handgun Carry Permit (HCP) and the written authorization of the director of schools.

Having an armed presence is the last line of defense from a future threat on our schoolchildren.  On multiple occasions, an armed security guard or faculty member has prevented a school shooting from either happening or becoming worse.  One of the most notable cases was Pearl High School in Mississippi in 1997.  A shooter who had already killed two and wounded seven was disarmed by the assistant principal, Joel Myrick, after Joel had retrieved his pistol from his truck.  Had an armed individual already been present, this incident could have ended much sooner.  Certainly another gun control law is not going to protect our school teachers or students. 

House Bill 6 has been referred to the House Education Committee and will be heard on Tuesday, April 9.  Its companion, Senate Bill 570, passed in the Senate Education Committee yesterday and is scheduled for consideration by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, April 9.  Please contact members of both committees and politely urge them to support House Bill 6 and Senate Bill 570.

Contact information for House Education Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee is provided below:

House Education Committee considering HB 6:

Representative Harry Brooks (Chairman)
(615) 741-6879

Representative John Forgety (Vice-Chairman)
(615) 741-1725

Representative Kevin Brooks
(615) 741-1350

Representative John DeBerry Jr.
(615) 741-2239

Representative Lois DeBerry
(615) 741-3830

Representative Bill Dunn
(615) 741-1721

Representative Roger Kane
(615) 741-4110

Representative Ron Lollar
(615) 741-7084

Representative Harold Love, Jr.
(615) 741-3831

Representative Debra Moody
(615) 741-3774

Representative Joe Pitts
(615) 741-2043

Representative Dawn White
(615) 741-6849

Representative Mark White
(615) 741-4415

Representative Ryan Williams
(615) 741-1875

Senate Judiciary Committee considering SB 570:

Senator Brian Kelsey (Chairman)

Senator Doug Overbey (First Vice Chairman)

Senator Stacey Campfield (Second Vice Chairman)

Senator Mike Bell

Senator Lowe Finney

Senator Ophelia Ford

Senator Todd Gardenhire

Senator Mark Green

Senator John Stevens
(615) 741-4576

Tennessee school safety


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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.