Archive for the '2007-2008 General Assembly' Category

HB 89 Passes the Senate Judiciary Committee

Monday, March 19th, 2007

The Senate Judiciary Committee passed HB 89 today by a vote of 6 to 4 over some rather stiff opposition from groups that mostly demonstrated at the hearing that they had no real understanding of what HB 89 will do.  HB 89 nows goes to the Senate Rules Committee, where GCO expects it to be set for a floor vote.  When that happens, GCO expects that there are enough votes to pass it (although GCO will not rest on its laurels).  The board wishes to extend a special thanks to the GCO members who made the inconvenient trip to the Capitol on a weekday to show up and support this bill.  Thanks also to those who have been contacting their Senators and urging them to support HB 89.

HB 89 will prevent the arrest and prosecution of persons who are eligible for a firearms license and choose to conceal or partially conceal their firearm while riding in an automobile.


ACTION ALERT! HB 89 – Committee Meeting at 3PM on Monday, March 19th

Sunday, March 18th, 2007


HB 89 is being heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday at 3:00 p.m.   WE NEED PEOPLE TO SHOW UP!

The meeting will be held in Room 307. We hope to see many of you there!

All GCO members are invited to speak, but please show up even if you will not be speaking.  Senators and Representatives are watching to see what sort of turnout GCO can make.  Let’s show them!  This will influence how seriously they take our input in the future.  The author of HB 89 specifically asked for GCO’s assistance at this hearing. 

Show up to encourage those who will be speaking!

A note to those who find the time inconvenient:  ALL bills are heard during the week during business hours with at most one or two days notice.  This will be GCO’s last opportunity to support HB 89 in person, so if you were thinking about attending a hearing meeting, this one would be an important one to attend!  We need to show our strength to the Georgia Senate.  Whether you intend to speak or not, we hope to see you at 3:00 on Monday!

The rest of the entry has driving directions and a link to a map of the public parking places in that area.

Directions to the Coverdell Legislative Office Building

Northbound on I-75/85:
• Exit at Central Avenue/Fulton St.
• Take a right at first light
• Take a left at next light, onto Capitol Avenue
• Take a left onto MLK, Jr. Drive
• Take first left onto Washington Street, looping Capitol Square
• The 244 Washington Building is on your left

Southbound on I-75-85:
• Exit at Martin Luther King Jr., Drive/State Capitol
• Go straight through first two lights at Jesse Hill, Jr. Drive
and Piedmont Avenue
• Take a left onto Washington Street, looping Capitol Square
• The 244 Washington Building is on your left

Once you make it into the general area, you will need to find a place to park.



Bill Will Kill Kids AND Police Officers: The AJC on HB 89

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

Maureen Downey published an editorial this morning claiming that passage of HB 89, which would prevent law abiding citizens from being arrested if their firearm is not fully open and exposed to view by all observers, “could mean more deaths of officers, kids.“  The editorial cites opposition by the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police, without explaining that the Association did not voice any opposition to the bill when it was being heard in committee because there was, and still is, major disagreement among its members regarding the Association’s public stance on HB 89.  The article failed to mention that the bill’s author, Tim Bearden, was a Sheriff’s Deputy for 15 years and estimates he has stopped between 10,000 and 12,000 motor vehicles.

The editorial also fails to mention that when GCO’s president testified before the House committee to voice GCO’s strong support of the bill, that GCO’s president testified that he was also a former police officer with more than a decade of experience.  GCO has former and current police officers in its ranks, but the editorial dismisses GCO’s public position with the remark that “only . . . ’one gun advocate’ spoke in its favor.”

The editorial asks why the bill is even necessary.  The opposite question should perhaps be asked.  Why does Ms. Downey find it necessary to put peaceable people in jail for having a gun only partially blocked from view while they are waiting six months or more for the probate court to issue their renewal firearms license?


Georgia Chamber of Commerce Opposes SB 43

Tuesday, February 13th, 2007

The Georgia Chamber of Commerce is asking its members to oppose SB 43 on the basis that it “holds employers subject to massive and costly litigation if an attorney can prove the company ‘should have known’ weapons in the workplace might be used in the commission of a crime.” sent the following response:

Dear Editor,

Ginger Hathcock is either lying or stopped reading SB 43 before she reached the end of the bill.  Ms. Hathcock states, “SB 43 . . . holds employers subject to massive and costly litigation if an attorney can prove the company ‘should have known’ weapons in the workplace might be used in the commission of a crime.”  Ms. Hathcock intentionally misrepresents the bill as creating some sort of liability on the part of employers.  Right after the sentence she quoted, however, the bill states, “Nothing contained in this Code section shall create a new duty on the part of the employer.”

Please correct this article asking your members to oppose this bill.  These provisions were inserted into the bill specifically to gain the acceptance of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce.  If you are still, as an organization, going to oppose the bill, please do so without misrepresenting to your members what it says.


HB 89 and HB 6

Monday, January 29th, 2007

HB 89 (car carry bill) and HB 6 (Katrina bill) both passed out of committee today without amendment.  GCO strongly supports both of these bills.  It is now up to Rules to schedule a floor vote in the House on these bills.


HB 89 Car Carry (rewrite of HB 7)

Wednesday, January 17th, 2007

Timothy Bearden of the 68th has reintroduced his car carry bill as HB 89.  It already has 2 cosponsors.

This bill changes 16-11-126 for those that do not yet have a Georgia Firearms License (but are not prohibited from obtaining one) from having to keep a firearm open to view or in a closed container (like console or glove box) and will allow them to carry a loaded firearm anywhere in the motor vehicle.

Georgia Carry supports this bill as we see no reason why a person who is not disqualified from obtaining a firearms license and is already allowed to carry a firearm in a closed container, should not be able to carry anywhere else in a vehicle.


Another fight over who controls the glove compartment of your car

Friday, January 5th, 2007

According to Tom Baxter and Jim Galloway at the AJC’s Political Insider, the NRA is pushing a bill, not yet prefiled, to bar employers from banning guns in automobiles parked in company parking lots, unless the company parking lot is secured by “gates and fences.”

Such a bill would still allow corporations with “fences and gates” to disarm their employees not only while at work, but while running errands during or immediately before or after the commute to or from work.   From the comments section: “Those that hunt or shoot recreationally are impacted by parking lot bans, because they can’t plan before or after work activities that involve firearms (e.g., no leaving directly for the hunting trip right after work on Friday).”


Katrina Bill Introduced in House

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2006

Representative Bobby Franklin, 43rd District, has introduced HB 6, which states emphatically that nobody acting under color of state law may seize, even temporarily, firearms, unless the seizure is pursuant to the investigation of a crime.  The bill grants a right of action in the courts of this state for aggrieved individuals and provides for an award of attorney fees to the prevailing party in any action for the return of a seized firearm in violation of the new law.  The state and its political subdivisions may not avail themselves of the attorney fee provision.

This same sort of bill passed unanimously in Florida last year.  That is, not even one anti-gun politician voted against it.  Georgia can do the same.

 Contact your representative and ask him to support HB 6!