Campus carry legislation is making progress, and several more bills could see action in the Arkansas General Assembly very soon. Your NRA-ILA is working with a number of legislators to ensure our Right to Keep and Bear Arms is protected, and improved where possible, in the Natural State. Please click the “Take Action” button below to contact your state Representative in support of the legislation detailed below.
On Tuesday, the House Committee on Judiciary voted 12-5 to pass House Bill 1249, a Campus carry bill introduced by state Representative Charlie Collins (R-84). NRA-ILA strongly supports this important legislation, which seeks to achieve a safer environment for public college and university residents, employees and visitors. HB 1249 would allow employees of public colleges and universities to carry firearms on campus, provided they have a valid Concealed Handgun Carry License (CHCL). Self-defense is a fundamental right of every person. The basic function of the Second Amendment is to protect the ability of law-abiding people to fight back effectively against those who would wrongfully deprive us of life and liberty. That right does not end at any arbitrary boundary, including the arbitrary boundary of a public college or university campus.
H.B. 1249 is scheduled to be heard on the House floor tomorrow, February 2. Please take the time to contact your state Representative in support of H.B. 1249 without any weakening amendments.
In the Senate, Senate Bill 37 remains on the Senate Committee on Judiciary calendar. This legislation, introduced by state Senator Alan Clark (R-13), would prevent employers from creating policies which prohibit employees, who possess valid CHCLs, from keeping a handgun in their vehicle while parked on the employer’s property. When employers restrict employees from keeping otherwise lawful firearms in their vehicles while parked on the employer’s property, it serves to negate the intent of having a CHCL. Employees must commute to and from their place of employment, and parking lot gun bans mean that they are effectively prohibited from possessing a firearm for protection on their person or in their vehicles from the time they leave for work to the time they return.
SB 37 has been referred to the Senate Committee on Judiciary, which could take up this bill at any time. Please contact committee members and urge them to support the passage of SB 37 without any weakening amendments.
Finally, Senate Bill 126, a Firearm Tax Holiday bill, remains on the calendar of the Senate Committee on Revenue & Tax. This legislation, introduced by state Senator Bart Hester (R-1), would establish a Second Amendment Appreciation Weekend on the second Saturday and Sunday in September, when no state taxes will be charged on the purchase of rifles, shotguns, and handguns. This legislation may need to be amended to ensure it will not violate existing taxation agreements made with a number of other states, but NRA does support its underlying intent.
SB 126 is currently in the Senate Committee on Revenue & Tax. Please contact committee members and encourage them to work to ensure this bill is properly amended to preserve its intent to create a Tax Holiday for firearm purchases in Arkansas.
Your NRA-ILA continues to work with legislators in Arkansas to introduce other pro-gun reforms, so please stay tuned to your email inbox and www.nraila.org further updates on the bills mentioned above and other firearms-related legislation.