Forsyth County adopted an ordinance this year banning firearms from its parks, and the ordinance specifically states that it applies to holders of “a concealed carry permit,” by which phrase GCO assumes the county means the holder of a Georgia Firearms License. Here is the county ordinance in full:
Sec. 54-5. Weapons prohibited.
It shall be a violation of this article for any person to take into a park or recreation facility any weapon, or to shoot, use, carry or employ any weapon or similar device in a park or recreation facility. This prohibition shall apply even if a person has a concealed carry permit.
(Ord. No. 102, 2-2-2006)
Regardless of what one may think of the wisdom of such an ordinance as a matter of public policy and public safety, Section 54-5 is a blatant violation of the state pre-emption law, O.C.G.A. 16-11-173, which simply does not permit the county to adopt such an ordinance. Forsyth is one of 8 counties (out of 159 statewide) that has such an ordinance on the books.
Thanks to the urging of a GCO member, Forsyth County is now considering a change to the ordinance. A hearing has been scheduled for October 10, at which the public will not be permitted to speak. Link: http://www.forsythco.com/meetagend_details.asp?InfoID=807
If a change is proposed, then the issue will be set for a regular meeting with a public hearing, at which members of the general public will be allowed to speak. When the date is set, we will post it here, so please check back regularly.