Yesterday, March 17, was a very active day for pro-firearms legislation at the Arizona Capitol. The following bills passed in the Senate Judiciary Committee:
- House Bill 2517, introduced by state Representative Steve Smith (R-11), would strengthen Arizona’s firearms preemption law. Currently, the firearms preemption statute reserves the authority to regulate firearms for the state legislature. This bill would fortify consistency in firearm and ammunition laws through a provision that would impose penalties for willful or knowing violations of this statute by localities. HB 2517 passed in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a 5 to 3 vote.
- House Bill 2535, introduced by state Representative John Kavanagh (R-23), would require that when certification from a chief law enforcement officer (CLEO) is a prerequisite by federal law for the transfer of a firearm or firearm suppressor -- as defined in the National Firearms Act -- such certification must be provided within sixty days if the applicant is not prohibited by law from receiving the firearm or firearm suppressor. This legislation would ensure deadlines are met and that individuals who are lawfully seeking to transfer a firearm or firearm suppressor are able to do so in an expeditious manner. Additionally, HB 2535 would provide an individual who has been denied certification by a CLEO with a written explanation for the denial. HB 2535 passed in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a 5 to 2 vote.
- House Bill 2339, introduced by state Representative Brenda Barton (R-6), would allow persons with a valid concealed weapon permit to carry in public buildings/events unless the building or event has electronic screening by security personnel at each entrance. This legislation does not impact private property owners and businesses, educational institutions, community colleges or universities under the jurisdiction of the regents. HB 2339 passed in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a 5 to 3 vote.
- House Bill 2103, introduced by state Representative Kelly Townsend (R-16), would allow an individual of at least nineteen years of age to obtain a concealed weapon permit if the person is currently in military service or has been honorably discharged. This legislation is a good way to thank our military for their service and will benefit law-abiding gun owners in Arizona. HB 2103 passed in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a 5 to 3 vote.
These bills, as previously reported, will now be considered by the Senate Rules Committee before being voted on by the full state Senate.
Also yesterday, Senate Bill 1063 passed in the Arizona Senate by a 16 to 13 vote. SB 1063, introduced by Senator Rick Murphy (R-21), would exempt a lawful firearm possessor who enters a public establishment or public event from misconduct involving weapons if proper storage is not provided for the weapon. Storage is required to be readily accessible on entry into the establishment or event and the weapon must be immediately retrievable on exit. This legislation would improve the current law for law-abiding firearms owners. SB 1063 now goes to the Arizona House for its committee assignment.
Additionally, House Bill 2483 passed in the Arizona House of Representatives by a 32 to 24 vote. HB 2483, introduced by state Representative John Kavanagh (R-23), would protect the lawful discharge of a firearm on private lands from being unnecessarily restricted. This legislation has been assigned to the Senate Public Safety Committee and is scheduled for a hearing TOMORROW, March 19, at 2:00 p.m., in Senate Hearing Room 109 of the state Capitol. Using the contact information provided below, please call AND e-mail members of the Senate Public Safety Committee TODAY and respectfully urge them to support HB 2483.
Senate Public Safety Committee:
Senator Chester Crandell (R-6), Chairman
Senator Al Melvin (R-11), Vice-Chairman
Senator Andrea Dalessandro (D-2)
Senator Steve Gallardo (D-29)
Senator Gail Griffin (R-14)
Senator Barbara McGuire (D-8)
Senator Don Shooter (R-13)