From the VCDL Alert:
Lots of great pro-gun bills, but the antis have finally showed up with a bunch of really bad bills.
BILLS THAT VCDL STRONGLY SUPPORTS
SB 334, Senator Hanger, repeals the ban on concealed handgun permit holders carrying a concealed handgun in a restaurant. It has a caveat that the permit holder does not consume alcohol in the restaurant while carrying concealed. VCDL prefers Delegate Cole’s bill HB 106, which simply repeals the ban in its entirety.
HB 489, Delegate Lingamfelter, totally rewrites the concealed carry code (18.2-308) to make it easier to navigate. This bill does not change current law, just reorganizes it.
HB 490, Delegate Lingamfelter, requires the Virginia State Police to develop a plan so that concealed handgun permits can be issued for a lifetime.
HB 505, Delegate Gilbert, repeals the ban on concealed handgun permit holders carrying a concealed handgun in a restaurant. It has a caveat that the permit holder does not consume alcohol in the restaurant while carrying concealed. VCDL prefers Delegate Cole’s bill HB 106, which simply repeals the ban in its entirety.
HB 870, Delegate Cline, removes the option for localities to fingerprint first-time concealed handgun permit applicants. 75% of localities don’t fingerprint currently and this “requirement” has been unproductive and unnecessary since the advent of instant computer checks. This bill will save localities over $30 per applicant in unnecessary FBI fingerprinting fees.
HB 885, Delegate Athey, allows anyone who may lawfully possess a firearm, to carry a handgun secured in a container or compartment in a vehicle or vessel.
HB 1191, Delegate Griffith, allows a court to authorize a Clerk to issue concealed handgun permits without judicial review as long as the person is not disqualified from receiving such a permit based on a background check and consulting with either the local sheriff or police department. It also allows a Circuit Court Clerk to sign a concealed handgun permit without the judge’s approval in such a case.
HB 1070, Delegate Athey, allows a person who has a concealed handgun permit to be allowed to carry a concealed handgun in any government facility being used as an emergency shelter. Events in Louisiana following hurricane Katrina and other such events have shown that people need to be able to protect themselves even in (and sometimes especially in) emergency shelters. This bill was put in for VCDL.
BILLS VCDL SUPPORTS
HB 854, Delegate Morefield, Castle Doctrine bill that protects a citizen who has to use force, including deadly force, either inside his residence or anywhere else he can legally be, from a civil lawsuit. Because of the bill’s wording requiring “proportionate force,” which puts too much “Monday morning quarterbacking” into the equation, this bill is supported, but not strongly supported.
HB 886, Delegate Athey, “Virginia Firearms Freedom Act,” states that firearms that are made in Virginia and sold in Virginia are not subject to Federal regulation as per the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
BILLS VCDL STRONGLY OPPOSES
SB 269, Senator Whipple, allows local government to ban guns on property owned by that locality. This bill would destroy preemption and would create a web of complicated gun laws that would do nothing to deter criminals, but would make it much harder for a law-abiding citizen to be able to carry a handgun for self-defense. Crimes are committed on government property and people need to be able to protect themselves wherever they may be. This bill targets law-abiding citizens by making the mere possession of a firearm on the wrong piece of real estate a criminal act.
HB 520, Delegate Morrissey, requires that anyone who sells three or more guns at a gun show be a Federal Firearms Licensee. This puts a huge, unnecessary, and arbitrary barrier to anyone who wishes to sell sell part or all of their gun collection.
HB 879, Delegate BaCote, allows localities to ban firearms and/or ammunition in libraries by ordinance. This bill would destroy preemption and would create a web of complicated gun laws that would do nothing to deter criminals, but would make it much harder for a law-abiding citizen to be able to carry a handgun for self-defense. Crimes are committed in and around libraries and people need to be able to protect themselves wherever they may be. Like SB 269, this bill targets law-abiding citizens.
HB 1146, Delegate J.M. Scott, subjects a person who has had their parental rights terminated to a lifetime firearms ban. No other civil rights are affected. Only felonies in Virginia law permanently terminate a person’s rights and this bill takes a dangerous deviation from that precedent.
HB 1209, Delegate Ward, requires that a person who has a lawfully registered machine gun notify the State Police of a change of address of the registrant or a change of the permanent location of the machine gun. This whole registration scheme is a waste of time as the federal government already has that information. The Commonwealth could save money by simply scrapping the state registration, not making it even more complicated for a person to lawfully own a machine gun.
HB 1214, Delegate Kory, removes the ability for a law-abiding citizen to have an unloaded gun in a container in a vehicle on public school property. Private or religious schools are left unchanged. A citizen’s ability to have a gun in their vehicle on any kind of school property needs to be left alone. This bill will do nothing to prevent crime, but only make criminals out of otherwise law-abiding citizens.
BILLS VCDL OPPOSES
HB 681, Delegate J.H. Miller, allows police officers to be able to arrest someone for a class 1 or 2 misdemeanor at will. Current law has reasonable exceptions that allow for arrest and give the police sufficient power to do their job. This is the same bill VCDL has opposed for years now.
HB 684, Delegate J.H. Miller, adds “butterfly” knives to the concealed weapon list that law-abiding citizens can no longer carry concealed, further expanding government power at the expense of our rights. Do we really need to keep expanding the list of prohibited self-defense options available to law-abiding citizens by disallowing even useful implements and tools? Machetes, butterfly knives… this is getting ridiculous. We seem to be moving in the direction of Britain, which now wants their subjects stripped even of kitchen knives. In the name of “prior restraint” there may be no end to the otherwise legal and useful items that government may deny us because “somebody might do something wrong with them.”
BILLS VCDL IS NEUTRAL ON
HB 1092, Delegate Crockett-Stark, allows retired police to be able to carry a concealed handgun without a permit wherever they may go. VCDL has no problem with good people like retired-police carrying a concealed handgun wherever they may go, but it gets tiresome that the government gives special privileges such as this to its own, while restricting the very citizens it is supposed to be serving. Law-abiding citizens, too, should be able to carry a concealed handgun wherever we might go and not need a state-issued permission slip to do so.
HB 1210, Delegate Loupassi, allows judges to be able to carry a concealed handgun without a permit wherever they may go. VCDL has no problem with good people like judges carrying a concealed handgun wherever they may go, but it gets tiresome that the government keeps giving special privileges such as this to its own, while restricting the very citizens it is supposed to be serving. Law-abiding citizens, too, should be able to carry a concealed handgun wherever we might go and not need a state-issued permission slip to do so.