House Passes HB 227 to Bring Constitutional Carry to Ohio
On Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021, the Ohio House passed Substitute House Bill 227 with a vote of 60 to 32. This is a major step toward Constitutional or "Permitless" Carry in Ohio. This bill must now make its way through the Senate before being placed on the Governor's desk for his signature.
Specifically, HB 227 would make licensing for concealed carry optional. Those who still wish to acquire a license can still do so. This provision preserves reciprocity agreements with other states that allow Ohio residents to carry concealed when they travel. For those who do not wish to apply for a license, anyone 21 years of age or older may carry as long as they are not otherwise prohibited by law.
"Ohio is far behind other states in recognizing Ohioans' right to freely carry firearms without a burdensome licensing process," said Dean Rieck, Executive Director of Buckeye Firearms Association. "There is no other Constitutional right where we tolerate so many barriers. In 21 other states, no licensing is required. It is time for Constitutional Carry in Ohio."
HB 227 also addresses one of the more confusing aspects of Ohio gun law, the so-called "duty to inform." Under current law, a person encountering law enforcement must "promptly" notify an officer that they are carrying. The word "promptly" has been interpreted differently by various police agencies and prosecutors, leaving gun owners in a vulnerable position, even when they believe they have complied with the law.
Ohio is one of only nine states to put the burden of notification on the person carrying a firearm. HB 227 removes the ambiguity of current law by clarifying that a person must notify an officer only when asked during a stop.
Buckeye Firearms Association (BFA) has worked tirelessly with the NRA, House leadership, and the House Government Oversight Committee, including Chairman Shane Wilkin, to secure the votes necessary to move this bill through committee and put it on the floor for passage.
Similar legislation is being considered in the Ohio Senate. Senate Bill 215, sponsored by Senator Terry Johnson, has received two hearings before the Senate Veterans and Public Safety Committee.
Buckeye Firearms Association urges the Senate to move Constitutional Carry as soon as possible.
Also, we've been talking extensively about Constitutional Carry on our podcast, Keep and Bear Radio. Click to listen:
- Ohio Representative Shane Wilkin Answers Common Questions About Constitutional Carry
- Legislative Update on Ohio‘s Gun Bills - What‘s Moving and What‘s Not?
- Ohio Senator Terry Johnson Presents Powerful Testimony on Constitutional Carry
- Senator Terry Johnson Takes us Inside the Fight for Constitutional Carry