Special Reports

Ohio Governor John Kasich Signs Bill Allowing Concealed Guns In College Campuses


Ohio Governor John Kasich has signed a bill that allows civilians to carry concealed weapons in college campuses and other public areas, news reports say.

Senate Bill 199, which was earlier passed by both senate and congress, expands where Ohio residents may be allowed to carry concealed weapons, The Blade reported. The bill gives public colleges and universities the authority to permit the carrying of weapons in campuses. It also lifts the current ban on concealed weapons in day-care centers, school safety zones, airport terminals, and certain government buildings.

Private companies and businesses, including day-care centers, can still prohibit the carrying of weapons, provided they post signs noting that they are off-limits. Firearms are still banned inside courthouses, police stations, and the Statehouse.

The new bill also allows active-duty military to carry concealed weapons without a permit, Cleveland.com reported. It also prohibits employers from banning permit-holding employees' carrying of weapons into company parking lots.

Various groups opposed the bill, with gun control advocates labeling it the "guns everywhere" bill.

Michele Mueller, leader of the Ohio chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, said Kasich ignored the safety concerns of various people, prioritizing gun lobby interests more than the public's general safety.

Charleta Tavares, a Columbus democratic state senator who voted against the bill, said earlier that law enforcers are going to deal with the consequences of the passing of the bill.

The Ohio Prosecuting Attorneys Association, Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police, college teachers and staff, and parents of young kids all opposed the bill. The Buckeye Firearms Association and the National Rifle Association, on the other hand, supported it.

Kasich signed the bill along with other bills that prohibit local governments from raising the minimum wage, and one that makes assisting suicide a felony. It will be in force within 90 days.

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