SB213 introduced; will remove campus ‘gun free’ zones

by Reid K Smith on February 23, 2013

As many of you may recall, last year’s SB59 was a major victory for MI-SCC and other pro-firearms rights groups in Michigan. SB59 made many great changes to CPL law, including the elimination of all ‘gun free’ zones with extra training. However, after SB59 passed a Senate committee, the Senate floor, a House committee, and the House floor, Governor Snyder decided to veto SB59 – legislation that would have saved lives. In meetings with the Governor and his aides both before and after the veto, advocates of SB59 were presented with “a moving target,” as SB59′s sponsor Senator Mike Green said; Governor Snyder’s demands for an acceptable bill continued to change. We believe that Governor Snyder simply doesn’t trust Michigan CPL owners. Let him know how you feel.

On Tuesday, Senator Mike Green introduced SB213. SB213 makes many of the same changes that SB59 made, so we won’t go over all of those in full detail. For campus carry purposes, everything stays the same as SB59 – campus classrooms and dorms are removed from the list of ‘gun free’ zones. However, SB213 requires no additional training to receive this exemption, which SB59 did. SB213 also makes several changes of interest to CPL holders; lowering the price of a CPL to $90 (Michigan currently has the 5th highest CPL cost in the country, at $105,) transferring issue authority to the Michigan State Police, (which will remove many of the county-by-county nickel and dime charges,) and eliminating the almost century-old county gun board apparatus. As with SB59, Michigan Students for Concealed Carry supports SB213 without reservations. Senator Mike Green deserves your thanks for sponsoring both SB59 and SB213. As you write your reps to ask them to support SB213, make sure to thank them if they voted for SB59, (see SB59 votes for Representatives and Senators.)

Remember, SB213 would only decriminalize campus carry. That’s a huge step, but it won’t change the gun bans that most campuses have in place – at least not directly. However, we expect that some campuses would change their policy to comply with state law. We also expect that many more recalcitrant campuses will keep their policies in place – despite the obvious violation of state preemption law. At that point, litigation may likely be the only appropriate next step.

We’ll keep you posted on the status of SB213. We anticipate another long fight ahead, and we’ll need your support. Follow us on Facebook, on Twitter, and via RSS feed to ensure that you stay up to date.

For those interested, the full text of SB213 is available here.

NOTE: Many have raised concerns because SB213 states that “schools” will continue to be ‘gun free’ zones. In Michigan, “schools” are defined in Chapter 750, Act 328 of 1931, Section 750.237a as “a public, private, denominational, or parochial school offering developmental kindergarten, kindergarten, or any grade from 1 through 12.” In other words, “schools” are K-12 schools.

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