Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Indiana Gun Bills Won’t Get a Hearing

Heath VanNatter
Heath VanNatter

Local news reports

The 2015 legislative bills co-authored by District 38 Representative Heath VanNatter and District 69 Representative Jim Lucas will not be heard this legislative session, but have garnered attention from across the United States.

The three bills presented aim to limit the restrictions placed on gun owners in Indiana, which already has some of the more lenient and undefined laws in the nation.
House Bill 1244 aims at protecting a citizen’s right to carry a gun wherever they see fit. In the case that a business bars the possession of a firearm by a patron or an employee, this bill seeks to grant the disarmed person immunity from civil liability and the right to sue the business owner.  Currently, private businesses may restrict or forbid firearms on their properties.
HB1144 repeals the law that requires a person to obtain a license to carry a handgun in Indiana. Currently, Indiana does not require a permit to purchase firearms. However, a handgun license is required to carry for personal protection off an individual’s own property, hunting, and target shooting.
Perhaps the most controversial, HB1143 prohibits a state agency, including a state supported college or university, from regulating the possession or transportation of firearms. It also allows a person to bring action against a state agency if the person is adversely affected by a rule, a measure, an enactment, or a policy of the state agency that violates this law.

“It’s already dead,” Rep. VanNatter lamented. “The chairman of the public policy committee said he wasn’t going to hear the bills. So this is dead for this year. The session ends April 29, but it depends what we’ll bring up next session. We have a five-bill limit, so I’ll have to prioritize what I want to do.”

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