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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Congressman Forbes Seeks to Improve Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act

In October of last year, Congressman Randy Forbes (R-VA4th) introduced the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act Improvements Act of 2009 ( H.R. 3752). The Bill Amends the federal criminal code to: (1) expand the definition of "law enforcement officers," for purposes of provisions authorizing such officers to carry concealed weapons, to include current and retired law enforcement officers of the Amtrak Police Department, the Federal Reserve System, the executive branch, and the Armed Forces; (2) allow law enforcement officers who are retired or who separated in good standing after at least ten years of service to carry a concealed weapon; and (3) expand the categories of law enforcement officers authorized to possess a fireman in a school zone to include retired law enforcement officers.

In a letter to Congressman Forbes announcing NRA's support for the legislation, Chuck Cunningham, Director of Federal Affairs for the NRA, said, “Since [LEOSA’s] enactment in 2004, it has become clear that officers have suffered from inconsistent certification processes from state to state. In many cases, the confusing process and bureaucratic red tape has complicated the implementation of the law. Your legislation proposes reasonable changes that will allow qualified active and retired law enforcement officers to comply more with the law.”

VSSA agrees with NRA and this bill if passed and signed into law will simplify what currently involves differing interpretations of the implementation of the law. This often leads some states to refuse to issue the required documentation for a retired law enforcement officer to carry concealed. H.R. 3752 would establish measures of uniformity by enabling a firearms instructor to certify that retired law enforcement officers meet the active duty standard for firearms training. This would allow law enforcement officers who are retired or who separated in good standing after at least ten years of service to carry a concealed weapon.

VSSA supports this important legislation and urges every Virginia gun owner to contact your congressman and encourage them to sign on as a co-sponsor of H.R. 3752.

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