Governor Pat McCrory (R) signed House Bill 562 into law today, making official the passage of the third NRA-backed omnibus pro-gun reform bill in the last three legislative sessions. Our thanks go out to Governor McCrory, as well as to state Representatives Jacqueline Schaffer (R-105), Justin Burr (R-67), and George Cleveland (R-14), and state Senator Jeff Tarte (R-41). Representatives Schaffer, Burr and Cleveland fought tirelessly to pass the strongest bill possible, and Senator Tarte guided the bill through the Senate.
As previously reported, HB 562 makes several important changes to North Carolina gun laws, including:
- Requiring the chief law enforcement officer (CLEO) of a jurisdiction to certify the transfer or making of a firearm in a timely manner.
- Clarifying the exemption for keeping a firearm in a vehicle by a person with a valid Concealed Handgun Permit (CHP) while the vehicle is on the property of a public school.
- Establishing an affirmative defense for an individual in certain situations where he or she uses a firearm on prohibited school property "in response to a threatening situation in which deadly force was justified..."
- Improving the existing Range Protection Law, which would help to protect established shooting ranges from new local ordinances designed to shut them down.
- Improving the issuing process and removing unnecessary disqualifiers for CHP applicants.
- Lowering the penalty for carrying a firearm with a valid CHP on posted property from a misdemeanor to an infraction.
- Removing the prohibition on using a lawfully possessed short barreled rifle for hunting.
- Strengthening North Carolina’s preemption statute.
Thanks to all NRA members who contacted their legislators throughout the process, as well as to our friends at the North Carolina Rifle and Pistol Association (NCRPA), the NRA’s State Affiliate. Provisions of this bill take effect on several different dates. Please stay tuned in to www.nraila.org for more information.