BFA testifies in support of HB 272 to allow firearms in government buildings

On Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2023, Buckeye Firearms Association presented testimony to the House Government Oversight Committee in favor of House Bill 272.

Sponsored by Reps. Adam Mathews and Justin Pizzulli, HB 272 would give local governments the authority to allow concealed handgun licensees to carry a concealed handgun in government buildings with a courthouse if court is not in session.

Current state law forbids carry in courthouses or buildings housing a courtroom even when court is not in session and when local authorities would prefer to allow it. This makes no sense given that localities have the authority to allow carry in other government buildings. Many smaller communities don't have a dedicated courthouse, but instead use multipurpose facilities where a courtroom may be located.

HB 272 would maintain the security of courtrooms while in session while allowing concealed carry at other times when citizens need to conduct municipal business.

This was the third hearing on HB 272. Here is the text of BFA's testimony:

Chairman Peterson, members of the House Government Oversight Committee, I am here to speak on behalf of Buckeye Firearms Association as a proponent of House Bill 272. HB 272 would allow municipalities to permit people with a Concealed Handgun License to carry a firearm in a government building where a courtroom also exists, provided court is not in session.

This legislation removes yet another unnecessary burden on the constitutional rights of Ohioans to carry a firearm to protect themselves and their loved ones. The existence of prohibited places in Ohio law requires law abiding people to make difficult choices each and every day.

They can leave their firearms at home, making themselves vulnerable in a world where criminals have become increasingly emboldened as a result of the burdens that have been placed upon law enforcement and our justice system, which have created a perception of very little consequence for wrong doing.

They can leave their firearms locked in their cars when they enter a government building. This choice leaves them vulnerable while they’re inside the facility. And also makes their firearm a potential target for theft.

House Bill 272 seeks to eliminate these difficult choices and allows towns to make this decision for themselves. This is a common sense approach, which also eliminates just one more soft target for those who would do us harm.

Buckeye Firearms Association strongly encourages the House Government Oversight Committee to pass House Bill 272 to allow it to be brought to the full House for consideration. Thank you for your time. I am happy to answer any questions you may have.

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Buckeye Firearms Association is a grassroots organization dedicated to defending and advancing the right of citizens to own and use firearms for all legal activities, including self-defense, hunting, competition, and recreation. Read more.