Last Thursday, February 26, the House Committee on Education amended House Bill 1077 and reported it out for consideration on the House floor. This legislation, as introduced by state Representative Charlie Collins (R-84), sought to allow staff members of public colleges and universities with valid Right to Carry permits to carry a firearm for personal protection while on school property. While the original bill failed to pass committee on February 5, supporters continued to work on ways to resurrect the bill. Unfortunately, some additional restrictions were added. HB 1077, as amended, passed in the state House yesterday by a 66-25 vote and has been sent to the Senate, where it has been referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The amended bill now allows public colleges and universities to require an additional "active shooter" training course before staff members who are concealed handgun license holders will be able to carry a firearm for personal protection while on campus. While there is no minimum standard for the duration of the additional training, the course cannot exceed 16 hours. In addition, those who have gone through the initial course requirement may be required to take an additional course every year to maintain their certification for carrying on campus. This annual course, again, has no minimum requirement for duration, but cannot exceed eight hours.
Although there are some concerns, HB 1077 remains an NRA-supported bill, and we encourage you to contact members of the Senate Judiciary Committee and encourage them to support HB 1077 when it is brought before them.
Senate Judiciary Committee:
Senator Jeremy Hutchinson (R-33), Chair
Senator Robert Thompson (D-20), Vice Chair
Senator Jane English (R-34)
Senator Keith Ingram (D-24)
Senator Bryan King (R-5)
Senator Gary Stubblefield (R-6)
Senator Eddie Joe Williams (R-29)
Senator Jon Woods (R-7)