Finally I will be able to carry a concealed weapon without having
to worry about a police terrorist stealing it and arresting me!
Concealed weapons bill about to become law
Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services
April 8, 2010 - 3:10PM , updated: April 8, 2010 - 4:46PM
Arizona is on the verge of becoming the third state in the nation to let just about any adult carry a concealed weapon.
Without a word of debate, the House voted 36-19 on Wednesday to eliminate the criminal penalties that now exist if someone has a hidden gun without first getting the necessary state permit. The Senate already has approved the measure.
Senate gives final OK to concealed weapons bill
House gives OK Ato concealed weapons bill
That leaves only the anticipated signature of Gov. Jan Brewer on SB 1108. The change would become official 91 days after the legislative session ends, which at the current projection would put the new law on the books at the end of July.
Gubernatorial press aide Paul Senseman said Brewer wants to review the final version before making a decision. But he indicated, barring something unexpected in the bill, it will get her signature.
“Gov. Brewer has been a long-time supporter of and vigorous protector of Second Amendment rights,” he said. And Brewer herself, talking about Arizona history last year to the National Rifle Association, cited what she said was this state’s long tradition of people with guns, often not visible.
“You know, a saloon girl or two were even known to keep a derringer in their garter belt, just in case,” she said.
Only Vermont and Alaska permit any adult to carry a concealed weapon.
Under current Arizona law, any qualified adult — meaning not a convicted felon or someone mentally incapacitated — can openly carry a gun. But Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, one of the main proponents of the change, said that right, while perhaps sufficient in territorial days, is meaningless for many people today.
He said it effectively disarms a woman who would want to have a gun in a purse or anyone who would like a gun on the hip but wants to also wear a jacket.
Supporters also argued that those who do not want to carry openly should not have to get permission from the state.
Getting a permit currently requires attending an eight-hour, state-approved class. Subjects include the legality of the use of deadly force, marksmanship and judgmental shooting. And applicants must undergo a criminal background check.
Arizonans who want will still be able to get a state-issued concealed weapon permit even after the new law takes effect. One of the main benefits is that other states with their own permitting system routinely honor licenses issued in Arizona; an Arizonan with a concealed gun but without a permit going to another state would remain subject to arrest.
The legislation, if signed by Brewer, actually would make it easier to get a state permit.
Instead of having to complete a state-approved course, applicants could qualify by completing any National Rife Association firearms safety or training course, any special course offered for security guards and investigators, or any hunter education or safety course approved by the Arizona Game and Fish Department.
Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Phoenix, one of the foes of the measure, said the change will make life more difficult for police officers. [Rep. Kyrsten Sinema is a pig lover who supports a bigger better police state!]
Right now, she said, officers who find someone with a concealed weapon can arrest them for that reason alone if they don’t have a permit. She said the change in law leaves officers without options when encountering gang members and others who are committing no other crime.
Concealed Carry Weapons (CCW) holders in Arizona*
2000 -- 61,228
2001 -- 65,276
2002 -- 67,692
2003 -- 66,677
2004 -- 68,856
2005 -- 74,161
2006 -- 85,404
2007 -- 99,370
2008 -- 117,684
2009 -- 147,121
Latest count -- 153,209
* no data available pre 2000
Source: Arizona Department of Public Safety
Brewer signs bill to carry concealed weapons
Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services
April 16, 2010 - 4:28PM
Matt York, The Associated Press
Sometime this summer, virtually anyone you meet walking down the street could be carrying a concealed weapon.
Gov. Jan Brewer on Friday signed legislation to wipe out the current law which makes it a crime to carry a hidden gun without first obtaining a state-issued permit. The law will take effect 91 days after the Legislature finally adjourns, something now scheduled for the end of the month.
“I believe this legislation not only protects the Second Amendment rights of Arizona citizens, but restores those rights as well,” Brewer said in a prepared statement.
Arizona adults who have not been convicted of felonies always have been allowed to carry sidearms openly. The right to have a concealed weapon was added in 1994.
But that requires a state-issued permit. And to get that, applicants need to pass a one-day course which covers everything from when state law allows the use of deadly force to proving the ability to handle and fire the gun.
It also requires a background check.
Gubernatorial press aide Paul Senseman said Brewer believes that distinction is not justified.
“If you carry a weapon and it’s exposed, it’s totally legal,” he said. “But if your T-shirt hangs over it, you’ve got a coat over the top of it, you’re carrying it illegally.”
And Senseman said Brewer does not believe Arizonans should need a “permission slip from the government” to exercise their constitutional right to carry guns just because of that difference.
Senseman acknowledged the law wipes out the requirement for instruction on the law and in handling a weapon. He said Brewer does support people getting some training before carrying around a weapon.
But he said Brewer could not justify having one set of rules for those who carry openly — meaning no training needed at all — with a different set of rules for the same gun in a purse or under a jacket.
When the law takes effect, it will make Arizona the third state in the nation to let any adult who can legally own a gun carry it concealed without getting a permit. The other two are Alaska and Vermont.
The signing came on the anniversary of the 2007 shooting at Virginia Tech where a gunman killed 32 students before turning the weapon on himself. Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, the architect of this legislation, said that’s only appropriate.
“Somebody could have saved those students if it had not been for government restrictions,” he said, calling the massacre “the result of gun laws that restrict citizens.”
The new law does not wipe out the ability to get a state-issued permit. And there are some benefits to having one.
One of the biggest is that other laws now prohibit carrying a gun into any bar or restaurant where alcohol is served. But a law approved by legislators last year and signed by Brewer creates an exception for those who have a concealed-carry permit.
The other is that most states which still require permission to have a concealed weapon honor Arizona’s permit; other Arizonans who bring a hidden gun to other states would remain subject to arrest.
But another provision of the new law actually eases the requirements to get a state-issued permit. While completing a gun-safety course approved by the Department of Public Safety would remain one option, anyone seeking a permit could also qualify through hunter education or safety courses approved by the Arizona Game and Fish Commission, evidence of current military service or honorable discharge from U.S. armed forces, or completing any National Rifle Association firearms safety or training course.
The new law applies only to those who are at least 21 years old. And concealed-carry permits are not available to those who are younger.
Anyone younger than 21 would still be prohibited from carrying a concealed weapon on property that does not belong to that person, a parent, grandparent or legal guardian. But the new law does narrow the definition so that a weapon is not considered concealed if any part of the gun or holster is visible.
John Thomas, lobbyist for the Arizona Association of Chiefs of Police, testified against the measure earlier this session, telling lawmakers the change “will take Arizona back to the Wild West... with no consideration of officer safety.”
But Pearce noted that police groups opposed the original 1994 concealed-carry law, predicting it would lead to officer shootings — shootings Pearce said did not happen.
To soften police opposition, language was inserted in the measure to require anyone stopped by a police officer to disclose whether he or she is carrying a concealed weapon and to take temporary possession of the gun while the person is being questioned.
This is actually the third measure expanding gun rights that Brewer has signed this year alone.
She penned her approval to one bill which prohibits cities from having restrictions on weapons more stringent than anything in state law. That is specifically aimed at communities which have prohibited those with concealed weapons permits from carrying them into city parks.
And Brewer signed legislation aimed at allowing Arizonans to have firearms without registering them with the federal government. That law says federal laws do not apply to weapons and ammunition manufactured wholly within Arizona.
Concealed carry legal in Arizona without a permitSource
Arizona to allow concealed weapons without permit
Governor Brewer signs legislation into law
by Alia Beard Rau - Apr. 16, 2010 03:46 PM
The Arizona Republic
Starting later this summer, U.S. citizens 21 and older can begin carrying a concealed firearm without a permit in Arizona.
Gov. Jan Brewer signed Senate Bill 1108 into law Friday afternoon. It eliminates the requirement for a concealed-carry weapons permit, but does require gun owners to accurately answer if an officer asks them if they are carrying weapon concealed. It also allows officers to temporarily confiscate a weapon while they are talking to an individual, including during a traffic stop. [Huh? The whole purpose of the 2nd Amendment is to allow the people to defend themselves against government tyrants and that means cops or the police]
"I believe strongly in the individual rights and responsibilities of a free society, and as governor I have pledged a solemn and important oath to protect and defend the Constitution," Brewer said in a news release. "I believe this legislation not only protects the Second Amendment rights of Arizona citizens, but restores those rights as well."
The law goes into effect 90 days after the Legislature adjourns for this session, which could happen in the next couple of weeks.
Arizona joins Vermont and Alaska in not requiring such permits.
"If you want to carry concealed, and you have no criminal history, you are a good guy, you can do it," bill sponsor Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, has said of his bill. "It's a freedom that poses no threat to the public."
National Rifle Association lobbyist Matt Dogali said the new state law would not violate any current federal requirements.
"There is no federal requirement for a permit or lack thereof," Dogali said.
The federal government oversees the background-check program required to purchase a weapon, which will still be required in Arizona in most cases.
Brewer last week did sign a separate law that exempts guns made and kept in Arizona from federal regulation, including background checks.
Arizona had 154,279 active permits as of April 4. Permit holders are spread across all ages, races and counties, but White males older than 30 in Maricopa and Pima counties hold the majority, according to the Arizona Department of Public Safety data.
The permits generated $1.8 million in revenue last fiscal year, according to DPS. The money is used to help cover costs for enforcing laws related to the Highway Patrol, operating the concealed-carry weapon-licensing program and impounding vehicles.
Arizona's permit process will remain in place, and many gun owners may still choose to get a permit. Permits would still be needed in order to carry a weapon into a restaurant or bar that serves alcohol. They would also be needed if an Arizonan wants to carry his or her gun concealed in most other states.
For those who do choose to get a permit, the education requirements do change under the new law. Classes are no longer required to be a set number of hours or include any hands-on use of the weapon. Those who don't get a permit would not be required to get any training or education.
Retired Mesa police officer Dan Furbee runs a business teaching permit and other gun safety classes. He said if most people choose not to get a permit, it will put several hundred Arizona firearms instructors out of business. [Hmmm the concealed carry law is a jobs program for gun instructors]
"It's going to hurt," he said.
But he said what really concerns him is that the new law will allow people who have had no education about Arizona's laws and no training on the shooting range to carry a concealed gun. [and more important the money he will lose because the government will no longer force people to take his silly class] The eight-hour class currently required to get a permit includes information on state law and gun safety, as well as requires students to be able to hit a target 14 out of 20 times. Furbee said his class at Mesa-based Ultimate Accessories costs $79, plus $60 for the five-year permit.
"I fully agree that we have a right to keep and bear arms," Furbee said. "But if you are not responsible enough to take a class and learn the laws, you are worse than part of the problem." [translation - I deserve the money the government forces gun owners to pay me to take my class - it's not about safety, it's about revenue]
He said it's not uncommon for students to walk into his classroom and pull a new gun out of a box with no idea how to hold it and no understanding of the laws surrounding it.
"If you are going to carry a concealed weapon, you should have some kind of training and show that you are at least competent to know how the gun works and be able to hit a target," he said. "You owe the people around you a measure of responsibility."
This new law is the latest of several that have passed over the past year since Brewer took over the office from former Gov. Janet Napolitano, a Democrat.
Napolitano vetoed at least a dozen weapons bills that crossed her desk during her seven years in office, all of which would have loosened gun restrictions. In 2005, Napolitano rejected a bill that would have allowed patrons to carry loaded guns into bars and restaurants. In 2008, she also vetoed a bill that would have allowed people to have a hidden gun in vehicles without a concealed-carry permit.
In January 2009, Napolitano resigned to become U.S. Homeland Security secretary and Republican Secretary of State Brewer became governor.
During her first year in office, Brewer signed a bill allowing loaded guns in bars and restaurants, as well as another that prohibits property owners from banning guns from parking areas, so long as the weapons are kept locked in vehicles.
Other gun measures
Several other bills introduced this session aim to loosen weapons regulations.
• House Bill 2307
Summary: Exempts any firearm or ammunition manufactured and kept in Arizona from federal regulation, including registration.
Status: Passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Jan Brewer.
• House Bill 2543
Summary: Extends restrictions on local governments from regulating firearms and ammunition to include the purchase, acquisition, storage, licensing or registration of such items. Also prohibits cities and counties from banning firearms in parks.
Status: Passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Brewer.
• Senate Bill 1014
Summary: Would allow a community college faculty member to carry a concealed firearm on campus.
Status: Passed the Senate as an unrelated bill. Strike everything amendment with the new wording was added and passed the House Military Affairs and Public Safety Committee. Awaits a vote of the House Committee of the Whole.
Source: Legislation Online Arizona
Gov. Brewer to get concealed-gun bill
by Alia Beard Rau - Apr. 9, 2010 12:00 AM
The Arizona Republic
Within the next week, Arizona could become the first state with a large urban population to allow U.S. citizens 21 and older to carry a concealed firearm without a permit. Only Alaska and Vermont have similar allowances.
Senate Bill 1108, crafted by Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, passed in the House of Representatives on Thursday with a vote of 36-19 and no comments from either side.
"This is a big day," National Rifle Association lobbyist Matt Dogali said. "This is a major restoration of a principal right."
The bill will go to the governor Monday, and Gov. Jan Brewer will have until the following Saturday to sign it, veto it, or do nothing and allow it to become law. The law would go into effect 90 days after the legislative session ends, which could happen within the next few weeks.
Brewer spokesman Paul Senseman said she has not made a final decision on whether she will sign the bill. "But she has a long track record of strong, vigorous support of the Second Amendment," he said.
As of April 4, there were 154,279 active concealed-carry weapon permits in Arizona. The permits generated $1.8 million in revenue last fiscal year, according to Harold Sanders, Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman. The money is used to help cover costs for enforcing laws related to the Highway Patrol, operating the concealed-carry weapon-licensing program and impounding vehicles. Sanders said it's impossible to know how the legislation would affect that budget or state employees.
Dogali said many gun owners will still likely get a permit. They would still be needed in order to carry a weapon into a restaurant or bar that serves alcohol as well as for an Arizonan to carry his or her weapon concealed in most states.
The training requirements to get the permit would change under the proposed law. John Thomas, lobbyist for the Arizona Chiefs of Police, said the new provisions don't require the training class to be a set number of hours or include any hands-on use of the weapon.
A background check would still be required to get a permit, as well as to buy a gun in most cases. Brewer this week signed another law that exempts guns made and kept in Arizona from federal regulation, including background checks.
The chiefs association was originally opposed to the concealed-weapons bill. It worked to get several provisions added, and the group now is neutral. Those provisions include requiring gun owners to accurately answer an officer when asked if they are carrying a weapon and allowing police to temporarily confiscate the weapon while they are in contact with someone.
If the bill becomes law, Thomas said both law enforcement and residents should expect changes.
"You're going to have officers approaching people and asking them if they are carrying a weapon," he said. "And if a policeman asks you if you are carrying a weapon and you do not answer accurately, it's a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable with six months in jail."
He said Arizonans also should start assuming that starting sometime late this summer, a lot more people with no training will likely be carrying concealed guns.