Concealed Carry Legislation Update

Concealed Carry Legislation Update
(02/02/06)

On January 31, the Wisconsin State Assembly failed to override Governor Doyle’s veto of legislation that would have allowed Wisconsinites to carry concealed weapons. The Assembly fell two votes short of the 66 required to override a gubernatorial veto, with State Representatives Terry Van Akkeran (D-Sheboygan) and John Steinbrink (D-Pleasant Prairie) voting against the override after voting for the bill when it was approved in that house of the state legislature on December 13, 2005.

Dubbed the “Personal Protection Act,” Senate Bill 403 would have permitted people to carry a concealed weapon if they underwent training, in a 22-hour course. The permit would have been good for five years, and further training would have been needed to renew the permit. The bill also provided specific training and certification standards to enable retired law enforcement officers to carry concealed weapons in compliance with a federal law that was enacted in 2004.

This legislation would have banned people from carrying concealed weapons into child care centers, churches, college campuses, domestic violence centers, health care facilities, nonprofit organizations that serve children and youth sporting events. Businesses wanting to prohibit concealed weapons on their property would have had to verbally inform their customers of the restriction, in addition to posting signs at their entrances. Amendments approved late last year lowered the allowable blood alcohol concentration for those carrying a concealed weapon to 0.02, created a 100-foot safety zone around schools, and made the filing of a false application a felony.

While the amended bill would have enabled officers to check the concealed carry permit database when stopping the driver of a motor vehicle, officers would not have been allowed to check the weapons permits when making other types of calls, such as a disturbance at a home. In addition, police officers who revealed the names of permit holders, built a list of permit holders, or used excessive force in stopping a permit holder could have been charged with a Class C misdemeanor.

Anyone with questions or comments on this legislation is encouraged to contact WPPA Assistant Executive Director Jim Palmer, either by telephone at 1-800-362-8838, or by e-mail at palmer@wppa.com.

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