Support VSSA Advertisers

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

General Assembly Reconvenes Wednesday to Consider Amendments

On April 13, Governor Bob McDonnell (R) added favorable amendments to two VSSA-supported bills, HB1217 and HB885.

HB1217 and HB885 will be taken up by the Virginia General Assembly during the reconvened session, which starts tomorrow, Wednesday April 21. The Governor's amendments can be agreed to or rejected. If the amendments are agreed to by both houses, the amended bill is reenrolled and becomes law. If the Governor's amendments are rejected, the original bill is sent back to the Governor where it may be signed as originally presented or vetoed.

House Bill 1217, sponsored by Delegate Lynwood Lewis (D-100), would allow local school boards to offer firearm safety education programs in the elementary grades. To assist local school boards opting to provide such instruction, the Board of Education must establish a standardized program of firearm safety education for students in the elementary school grades to promote the protection and safety of children. The bill requires that the program objectives incorporate, among other principles of firearm safety, accident prevention and the rules of the NRA's Eddie Eagle GunSafe® program. Local school boards offering the program must comply with Board curriculum guidelines and integrate the instruction in appropriate subject areas, if feasible, to ensure that every elementary school student receives instruction in firearm safety education. The Senate Education Committee added an amendment that would permit school boards to also use principles provided by the National Crime Prevention Center. Governor McDonnell amended the bill to the form in which it passed the House and deleting the reference to the National Crime Prevention Center.

The anti-rights Virginia Center for Public Safety sent out a desperate email last night accusing the Governor of mandating "NRA education for all children." We need gun owners to act now to make sure this outlandish charge does not defeat the amendment.

House Bill 885, sponsored by Delegate Clay Athey (R-18), would allow any person who may lawfully possess a firearm and is carrying a handgun while in a personal, private vehicle or vessel to keep the firearm locked in a container or compartment in the vehicle or vessel. Senate Bill 408 was not signed into law as the Governor seeks to amend it's companion bill, HB885. Governor McDonnell has recommended that the General Assembly strike the word "locked" and replace it with the word "secured".

Please contact both your Delegate and Senator and respectfully urge them to approve the Governor's amendments to HB1217 and HB885/SB408.

You can find your legislator's contact information here.

No comments: