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Monday, December 12, 2011

Firearm Bills Pre-filed for 2012 General Assembly Session

Four bills have been pre-filed for the 2012 Session of the General Assembly.

HB 20 Emergency Services & Disaster Law; shall not be interpreted to prohibit carrying, etc., of firearms-Provides that nothing in the Emergency Services and Disaster Law shall be interpreted to limit or prohibit the possession, carrying, transportation, sale, or transfer of firearms.

HB 22 Firearms; disposition thereof acquired by localities - Provides that no locality may participate in any program in which individuals are given a thing of value in exchange for surrendering a firearm to the locality (compensated gun confiscation) unless the governing body of the locality has enacted an ordinance authorizing the participation of the locality. The ordinance shall require that such firearms shall be offered for sale by public auction or sealed bids to a person licensed as a dealer.

HB 25 Concealed handgun permits; confidentiality of permittee information - Prohibits the clerk of the court from disclosing information contained on a concealed handgun permit application or on an order issuing a concealed handgun permit.

HB 26 Concealed handgun permit; failure to produce upon demand of a law-enforcement officer, penalty - Provides that failure to produce, upon demand of a law-enforcement officer, a concealed handgun permit and a government-issued photo identification while carrying a concealed handgun is punishable by a $25 civil penalty. A court may waive this penalty if the person presents a valid concealed handgun permit and government-issued photo identification to the court. The bill also introduces an affirmative defense of having a valid concealed handgun permit to a charge of violating the concealed weapons statute.

HB 22 and HB 25 have surfaced before.  A bill similar to HB 22 was vetoed by Tim Kaine when he was governor.  HB 25 address the issue of newspapers like the Fredericksburg Free Lance Star publishing the names of people issue concealed handgun permits.  Prior biills introduced to address this issue have not passed but with the change in the make-up of the state senate, there is hope this may be the year for this legislation.

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