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Arkansas: Legislature Adjourns Sine Die, Multiple Pro-Gun Measures Pass in Successful Year

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Arkansas: Legislature Adjourns Sine Die, Multiple Pro-Gun Measures Pass in Successful Year

Last week, on April 22, the Arkansas General Assembly adjourned Sine Die.  The 2015 legislative session was a success with the General Assembly taking many steps to support and respect your Second Amendment rights.  The following eight important pro-gun measures passed and have been signed into law by Governor Asa Hutchinson (R):

Senate Bill 159, introduced by Senator Linda Collins-Smith (R-19), has been codified into law as Act 1259.  Act 1259 removes the absolute prohibition on carrying a concealed firearm into a county courthouse for employees who have a concealed handgun license.  SB 159 received final passage in the Arkansas House of Representatives by a 74 to 3 vote on April 1, after passing in the Arkansas Senate on March 24 by a 33 to 1 vote.  Governor Hutchinson signed SB 159 into law on April 9.

Senate Bill 612, introduced by state Senator Jon Woods (R-7), has been codified into law as Act 649.  Act 649 removes the restriction on law-abiding, permanent U.S. residents who are not citizens from obtaining an Arkansas concealed handgun license.  SB 612 passed in the House of Representatives on March 17 by a 79-1 vote after passing in the state Senate by a 26-3 vote on March 9.  Governor Hutchinson signed SB 612 into law on March 25.

House Bill 1190, introduced by state Representative Kim Hammer (R-28), has been codified into law as Act 105.  Act 105 removes the restriction on obtaining a concealed carry permit from those Arkansas residents between the ages of 18 and 21 who are active members of the United States Armed Forces, members of the National Guard or a reserve component of the US Armed Forces, and former members of the US Armed Forces who have been honorably discharged.  HB 1190 was passed by the House of Representatives on February 9 unanimously and passed unanimously by the Senate on February 17.  Governor Hutchinson signed HB 1190 into law on  February 19.

House Bill 1240, introduced by state Representative Dwight Tosh (R-52), has been codified into law as Act 1073.  Act 1073 strengthens the civil immunity statute to protect a person from civil damages stemming from an incident when he or she lawfully uses deadly physical force in self-defense or in defense of another person.  On March 31, the House unanimously concurred with the Senate’s changes to HB 1240 after the Senate passed HB 1240 on March 27 by a 26 to 2 vote.  HB 1240 originally passed in the House unanimously on March 17. Governor Hutchinson signed HB 1240 into law on April 6.

House Bill 1372, introduced by state Representative David Meeks (R-70), has been codified into law as Act 933.  Act 933 removes the absolute prohibition on carrying a concealed firearm on school property for private K-12 schools and allows those schools to establish policies regarding the scope of who may carry a concealed firearm on school property.  HB passed in the Arkansas Senate by a 32-1 vote on March 26, after passing in the House on March 13 by a 80-2 vote.  Governor Hutchinson signed HB 1372 into law on April 2.

House Bill 1432, introduced by state Representative Jeff Wardlaw (D-8), has been codified into law as Act 1175.  Act 1175 removes the absolute prohibition on concealed handgun license (CHL) holders carrying their concealed handgun onto the property of any polling place.  Those property owners who still wish to prohibit CHL holders from lawfully carrying firearms at polling places on property under their control will still be permitted to post their property.  HB 1432 passed in the Senate by a 26-4 vote on March 31, after passing in the House by a 73 to 17 vote.  Governor Hutchinson signed HB 1432 into law on April 7.

House Bill 1488, introduced by state Representative Tim Lemons (R-43), has been codified into law as Act 720.  Act 720 requires the chief law enforcement officer (CLEO) of a jurisdiction to certify the transfer or making of a firearm, as required by the National Firearms Act, within 15 days if the person is not prohibited from receiving or possessing a firearm by law.  Act 720 also establishes that an applicant may appeal a denial to the circuit court.  HB 1432 passed in the Senate unanimously on March 23, after passing in the House unanimously.  Governor Hutchinson signed HB 148 into law on March 30.

House Bill 1505, introduced by state Representative Michelle Gray (R-62), has been codified into law as Act 1078.  Act 1078 removes the prohibition on having a firearm in a vehicle while in certain public parking lots for individuals with a concealed handgun license.  The House unanimously concurred with the Senate’s change to HB 1505 on March 31 after the Senate passed HB 1505 on March 27 by a 33 to 1 vote.  HB 1505 originally passed in the House on March 12 by a 68 to 9 vote. Governor Hutchinson signed HB 1505 into law on April 6.

NRA would like to thank our members and Second Amendment supporters who contacted their elected officials in support of these important laws for helping make the 2015 legislative session a success.   

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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.