published Thursday, February 28th, 2013

Tennessee House passes guns-in-parking lots bill

NASHVILLE — The House today approved a bill allowing Tennessee handgun-carry permit holders to store their firearms legally in vehicles parked on almost all parking lots in the state.

Their 72 to 22 vote sends the bill to Republican Gov. Bill Haslam for his consideration.

“I believe this bill is testament to hard work, thoughtful consideration and common-sense compromise,” the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Jeremy Faison, R-Cosby, told the House.

Republicans beat down an array of amendments, rejecting Democratic amendments that sought to prevent employers from still being able to fire workers as well as other efforts to exclude schools, prisons, mental institutions and other institutions from the bill’s provisions.

Under the legislation, employers still retain the right to fire employees for any reason, a provision that has upset some Second Amendment advocates.

House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh, D-Ripley, said that nonetheless, the bill goes too far.

He warned that “today we’re telling businesses they must allow guns on their property, and the question is, what will we do next?”

about Andy Sher...

Andy Sher is a Nashville-based staff writer covering Tennessee state government and politics for the Times Free Press. A Washington correspondent from 1999-2005 for the Times Free Press, Andy previously headed up state Capitol coverage for The Chattanooga Times, worked as a state Capitol reporter for The Nashville Banner and was a contributor to The Tennessee Journal, among other publications. Andy worked for 17 years at The Chattanooga Times covering police, health care, county government, ...

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