Amended Substitute HB347 delivered to Governor's Office
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Substitute HB 347 has been delivered to Governor Bob Taft today. This action starts the 10 day clock during which the Governor may either sign or veto the bill. If he does neither, it becomes law without his signature 90 days later.
The governor's office maintains that he "most likely will veto the bill." He has until December 16 to take that action. The Governor's office has received hundreds of calls and emails in support of HB347.
Jim Irvine, chairman of Buckeye Firearms Association, said “This Bill is an important step on the path towards modernizing Ohio’s firearm laws. We applaud the Senators and Representatives who worked hard to see this Bill’s passage, and look forward to continuing this work with them and Governor-elect Strickland next session.” A majority of Buckeye Firearms Association Regional Leaders were present on Wednesday when the bill was voted on in both the House and Senate to assure smooth, final passage of the Bill.
“Cities are out of the firearm regulation business” said Buckeye Legislative Chair Ken Hanson. “As an attorney who litigates firearm rights cases and who also represents and has represented Municipalities, I can say that the mandatory attorney fee provision is a ‘big stick.’ Tax payers are not going to be happy if their elected representatives have to pay $50,000 in attorney fees over futile attempts to continue in force worthless local ordinances. Look no further than the Maurice Clarett case to see an example of how criminals are never charged under these ordinances, resulting in the reality that these ordinances only impact the law abiding.”
The Bill dramatically improves firearm laws for gun owners and law enforcement in Ohio. Among the changes:
- Law enforcement officers are given “24/7” concealed carry in Ohio, and changes are made to Ohio law to allow our officers to better take advantage of Nationwide concealed carry under Federal Law.
- BCI investigators are now given the same firearm rights as law enforcement officers.
- Concealed Handgun Licenses (CHLs) issued under the new law are good for 5 years versus 4 years under current law. The application fee increases to $55.
- Sheriffs must accept applications for CHLs at least 15 hours per week, ending the administrative harassment some counties were imposing upon applicants.
- License holders can now carry a concealed handgun in a car. It is no longer a requirement that a pistol in a holster on the person or in a locked case be in plain sight.
- License holders may now carry in an unlocked closed purse or bag so long as the purse or bag is in plain sight.
- Local regulation of firearms is now completely preempted at the State level, ending the patchwork quilt of firearm laws across Ohio. Most importantly, this part of the Bill makes the award of attorney fees mandatory for any group that successfully challenges a municipal firearm ordinance, meaning cities that attempt defiance of this provision will financially pay for their obstinance.Media may contact Jim Irvine at 440-503-3011 for further information.