"Designated Gunslinger" law passes Oklahoma State House
The State House in Oklahoma has passed the "Designated Gunslinger" Bill which aims to allow customers to carry guns into restaurants that serve alcohol.
On Monday 17th February, the Oklahoma State House passed HB 1111 or as it has become more popularly know the “Designated Gunslinger” bill. The bill passed the House with a thumping majority of 76 to 21 with 3 State Representatives excused.
According to Brad Wolgamott, Deputy Research Director of the Oklahoma House of Representatives:
“HB 1111 allows an employee of an establishment in which alcoholic beverages are consumed to possess a firearm if approved by the owner or proprietor of the establishment. The measure reduces the penalty for a conviction for refusal to leave an establishment where alcohol is consumed while carrying a firearm from a felony to a misdemeanor and reduces the fine from $1,000 to $250. The measure adds “liquor store” to clarify that it is a business which may control the possession of weapons on property controlled by the liquor store.”
The "Designated Gunslinger"Bill only allows for guns to be carried in establishments that get less than half of their profits through alcohol sales.
According to the “Designated Gunslinger” Bill:
“CARRYING FIREARMS WHERE LIQUOR IS CONSUMED
A. It shall be unlawful for any person to carry or possess any weapon designated in Section 1272 of this title in any establishment where beer or alcoholic beverages, as defined by 1-103 of Title 37A of the Oklahoma Statutes, are consumed. This provision shall not apply to a peace officer, as defined in Section 99 of this title, or to private investigators with a firearms authorization when acting in the scope and course of employment. Further, this provision shall not apply to an owner, proprietor or employee of the establishment; provided, the employee has permission from the owner or proprietor of the establishment that the employee may have a pistol, rifle, or shotgun on the premises. Provided however, a person may carry the firearm into any restaurant or other establishment licensed to dispense beer or alcoholic beverages where the sale of beer or alcoholic beverages does not constitute the primary purpose of the business. It shall be lawful for a person carrying a firearm to be in a designated bar area of the restaurant as long as the person carrying the firearm is not consuming beer or alcoholic beverages.
B. Nothing in this section shall be interpreted to authorize any peace officer in actual physical possession of a weapon to consume beer or alcoholic beverages, except in the authorized line of duty as an undercover officer.
C. Nothing in this section shall be interpreted to authorize any person, employee or private investigator with or without a firearms authorization in actual physical possession of a weapon to consume beer or alcoholic beverages in any establishment where beer or alcoholic beverages are consumed.
D. Any person violating the provisions of this section shall be punished as provided in Section 1272.2 of this title.
E. As used in this section, “consume” means the act of drinking or ingesting alcoholic beverages or eating a product containing alcohol.
SECTION 2. AMENDATORY 21 O.S. 2011, Section 1272.2, as amended by Section 3, Chapter 259, O.S.L. 2012 (21 O.S. Supp. 2019, Section 1272.2), is amended to read as follows:
PENALTY FOR FIREARM IN LIQUOR ESTABLISHMENT
A. Any establishment where fifty-one percent (51%) of its annual income is derived from alcohol sales consumed on the premises of the establishment shall post on entry doors use by the public signage that reads “51%”
B. Any patron who intentionally or knowingly carries on his or her person any weapon into an establishment that displays on its entry doors a “51%” sign in violation of Section 1272.1 of this title, and refuses to leave said property shall, upon conviction, be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed Two Hundred and Fifty Dollars ($250.00).”
This is not yet law in Oklahoma as the “Designated Gunslinger” Bill still needs to pass through the State Senate and receive the Governor’s signature before it becomes law. However, if the lopsided majority for the bill in the State House of Representatives is anything to go by both of those will be only a matter of time.
Patrick Sullivan is the Political Editor of The Commentator @PatJSullivan
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