ATLANTA – Gov. Sonny Perdue vetoed one gun bill, but signed into law another measure that clarifies where licensed permit holders can carry guns.
“Georgia’s Common Sense Lawful Carry Act protects lawfully carrying citizens from unknowingly becoming criminals by clarifying where they can and cannot carry their weapons,” Sen. Mitch Seabaugh said in a news release. “They know all too well that a license to carry is not a license to commit a crime.
“This law was truly written by the citizens of Georgia, with input from all interested constituents,” Seabaugh added. “Government should work for the people to protect their freedoms and constitutionally guaranteed rights.”
Proponents of the bill say the measure clarifies “the confusing public gathering clause” that existed in state law. For example, the act prohibits guns at K-12 schools, but allows licensed carriers to keep one secured in his or her vehicle.
“It is vital for law-abiding citizens who wish to arm themselves for self-defense to know definitively what places are off-limits,” Ed Stone, president of GeorgiaCarry.org, said in a news release. “This bill, through the leadership of Sen. Seabaugh, eliminates much of the ambiguity inherent in the former law. GeorgiaCarry.org believes that this legislation is an important step in the restoration and full implementation of law-abiding citizens’ right to bear arms.”
Meanwhile, Perdue vetoed SB 291, a bill that also addressed where permit holders can carry guns.
“This bill would allow firearms to be carried into unsecure areas of airports,” Perdue said in a statement. “I have already signed SB 308, which clarifies Georgia’s public gathering statute and preserves the rights of private property owners.
“I believe this language is sufficient and adequately clarifies the law for Georgia firearms license holders,” the governor added.
The airport provision prompted U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., to introduce the “Firearm-Free Airports Act” that would ban anyone except law enforcement personnel from “carrying firearms into commercial airports nationwide.”