Last night, the Utah Senate and House of Representatives passed House Bill 276 by a 27 to 1 vote and a 63 to 8 vote respectively. Sponsored by state Representative Curt Oda (R-14), HB 276 would ensure that the mere carrying or possession of a holstered or encased firearm, without some additional incriminating behavior, does not constitute a violation of the Disorderly Conduct statute. As previously reported, HB 276 would remove one of the ploys (charging the person with disorderly conduct) being used by some local jurisdictions in Utah to circumvent state law and the Utah Constitution in an attempt to harass law-abiding firearm owners who are openly carrying a firearm in otherwise compliance with state law.
Also last night, the Utah Senate and House of Representatives both unanimously passed House Bill 373 with an NRA-supported amendment. Sponsored by state Representative Ryan Wilcox (R-7), HB 373, as amended, would require that certification by a chief law enforcement officer (CLEO), when a signoff is required for the transfer of a firearm or other item regulated by the National Firearms Act (NFA), be provided within fifteen days as long as the applicant is not prohibited by law from receiving the firearm or other item.
Additionally, the Utah Senate and House of Representatives passed a significantly amended version of House Bill 134 last night. As previously reported, the NRA had considerable concerns over the original language in House Bill 134, sponsored by state Representative Steve Eliason (R-45). After hearing our concerns, Representative Eliason worked hard to address the issues posed by the NRA, making multiple changes to neutralize the opposed language. Based on the amendments made, the NRA is now neutral on House Bill 134.
HB 276 and HB 373 will now be sent to Governor Gary Herbert (R) and await his signature. Please contact Governor Herbert and respectfully urge him to SUPPORT HB 276 and HB 373. Contact information for the Governor can be found here.