Georgia (very likely) is the 11th state to allow permitted concealed handgun on university property

9 Aug , 2014  

The ten states that already allow permitted concealed handguns onto school property to varying degrees. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures seven states allow the guns to be carried on campus (Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Oregon, Utah, and Wisconsin, though Pennsylvania should also be included).  In addition, both Florida (see their 2013 Appeals court case) and Kentucky (see their 2010 state Supreme Court case) allow permitted concealed handguns to be locked in cars.

But it looks as if Georgia should be added to the list. There are two new laws that went into effect in Georgia on July 1st (HB 60 and HB 826).

HB 826: A person who is licensed in accordance with Code Section 16-11-129 or issued a permit pursuant to Code Section 43-38-10 [may possess a concealed firearm] when he or she is within a school safety zone or on a bus or other transportation furnished by a public school or a person who is licensed in accordance with Code Section 16-11-129 or issued a permit pursuant to Code Section 43-38-10 when he or she has any firearm legally kept within a vehicle when such vehicle is parked within a school safety zone or is in transit through a designated school safety zone

HB 60: A person who is licensed in accordance with Code Section 16-11-129 or issued a permit pursuant to Code Section 43-38-10, [may possess a concealed firearm] when such person carries or picks up a student within a school safety zone, at a school function, or on a bus or other transportation furnished by a school or a person who is licensed in accordance with Code Section 16-11-129 or issued a permit pursuant to Code Section 43-38-10 when he or she has any weapon legally kept within a vehicle when such vehicle is parked within a school safety zone or is in transit through a designated school safety zone

The two bills are quite different. HB 60 allows you to keep your gun in your car. HB 826 lets you carry the gun anywhere on school property.

So which law is in effect? There are two considerations.

1) The first rule to look at here is which bill was signed last. In that case, HB 60 would be binding.
2) But that consideration is only relevant where the two bills are in conflict. In this case, there doesn’t appear to be any conflict. HB 60 allows one to possess a concealed firearm in vehicles on school property. In HB 826, permit holders are allowed to carry guns in all areas on school property. The two bills would have been in conflict if HB 60 had said that concealed firearms could only be possessed in vehicles on school property.

Even allowing guns locked in cars on campus can make a difference for people’s safety. Earlier this year, cops determined that a Eastern Florida State College student had fired his gun in self defense after being attacked by two other men.
The National Conference of State Legislatures has useful information here and here.
More information on Georgia is available here.

UPDATE: In a related point all the public universities in the country now all campus police to carry guns.

UPDATE:  According to the New York Times as of February 18, 2015, these are the laws in different states.  There are many obvious errors in this list of states.  Oregon and Pennsylvania (for a number of public colleges) being obvious examples.  Florida and Kentucky allow people to keep guns in their cars on campus.  Georgia could also be included in this list.  On the other hand, the New York Times surprisingly includes Oklahoma on their list.

Screen Shot 2015-02-21 at Saturday, February 21, 11.50 PM

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2 Responses

  1. […] current law about schools and gun-free zones seems pretty clear, but there was sufficient ambiguity that a court decision is necessary to clear things up. […]

  2. Michael Wilson says:

    Good morning,
    I am in Washington State and we have a commitment from a state representative to introduce a bill to allow for concealed carry on campus. I have just begun to research this issue in my spare time and would appreciate any ideas on legislation you can give me. We are looking for a model bill that can be introduced this session.

    Thank you,
    Michael Wilson, Olympia, WA

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