House committee accepts substitute language in HB 48 (Eliminate many 'no-guns' victim zones)

The House State Government committee has adopted a substitute House Bill 48 (Eliminate many 'no-guns' victim zones).

Under the original bill introduced by Rep. Ron Maag (R-Lebanon), Ohioans' right to carry would have been restored on college campuses, places of worship, day-care facilities (unless they post "no-guns"), private airplanes, school safety zones, non-secure areas of police stations and airports, and in certain government buildings.

The substitute bill seeks to restore Ohioans' right to carry in day-care facilities (unless they post "no-guns"), private airplanes, school safety zones, and in non-secure areas of police stations and airports.

The subsitute bill also contains "opt-in" language which would to allow authorities governing college campuses and certain government buildings the ability to allow concealed carry.

Places of worship, which already have the ability to "opt-in," would see no changes under the subsitute bill.

Buckeye Firearms Association President Jim Irvine testified in support of the bill:

Chairman Maag, Vice Chair Kunze, Ranking member Gerberry and members of the House State Government Committee, I speak today in support of Substitute House Bill 48.

This substitute bill removes several items that we feel are important. We recognize the need to be respectful of other interested parties requests. This bill remains one that will solve problems for license holders, takes no steps backwards, and is good public policy.

It will make legal the normal activities that regularly occur on school property, including dropping off a spouse, or a child’s lunch, homework, or medicine. It will allow a parent to enter a school as needed to sign out a sick child from the nurse. It will NOT allow a license holder to carry a gun inside a school or to other school event.

This bill would allow a license holder to carry a firearm into a day care facility, unless the facility chooses to post a “no guns” sign. It would also allow the carriage of firearms in the non-secure areas of airports and police stations, but keeps in place the prohibition for license holders carrying in the secure areas of these buildings.

Sub H.B. 48 would keep in place the current ban of concealed carry for colleges and universities, but grant them the same authority that grade schools currently have to authorize persons to carry firearms.

Similarly government buildings would remain a prohibited area for license holders, but those with legislative authority over the building would have the authority to allow concealed carry.

The bill would remove the state prohibitions on carrying firearms on airplanes. Federal law is sufficient in this area.

The bill would broaden the items sheriffs may use money in their CHL fund to include firearms and ammunition.

We ask for the committees support in moving this important legislation.

Respectfully submitted,

James Irvine, President

Click here to read Subsitute HB 48 in its entirety.

Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Secretary, BFA PAC Vice Chairman, and an NRA-certified firearms instructor. He is the editor of, which received the Outdoor Writers of Ohio 2013 Supporting Member Award for Best Website.

Media Coverage:

Gongwer News Service - Witnesses Differ Over Bill To Expand Concealed-Carry Laws

Buckeye Firearms Association President James Irvine said it's gratifying to see how much the opponents like Ohio's current gun laws and argued that this bill builds on previous legislation's success.

He argued that the bill doesn't "force" guns anywhere and further praised its removal of prohibitions on carrying firearms on airplanes, saying federal law is sufficient in this area. Mr. Irvine urged lawmakers to support the legislation.

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