MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — The Alabama House of Representatives has approved a bill that would allow residents to carry concealed handguns without a permit.
The bill passed 65-37 Tuesday. The proposal now heads to the Alabama Senate for final approval before being sent to Gov. Kay Ivey’s desk to be signed into law.
“Every time I turn on the news there’s an innocent person that’s killed by someone who has a gun in many instances already illegally. The police can no longer police the gun carriers that actually have guns in their possession,” Rep. Juandalynn Givan said.
Officially known as House Bill 272, the proposed law has been called a top priority by House Republicans since the legislative session began earlier this year.
“The $20 piece of plastic permit is not going to stop an evil person from committing a crime or doing wrong, and it will not protect our law enforcement from getting hurt or killed,” Rep. Shane Stringer said.
While the bill passed the house convincingly, local law enforcement agencies have expressed opposition to the bill.
The Alabama Sheriffs Association, the Association of County Commissions of Alabama, the Alabama Association of School Resource Officers and other agencies held a press conference outside of the Montgomery State House back on Feb. 1 to express the dangers the bill could bring.
“This proposed legislation will allow dangerous criminals to avoid background checks or other security checks and carry weapons into K-12 school athletic events, carry weapons openly or hidden in vehicles and carry weapons into most businesses across the state,” the groups said in a joint press release.