8:02am

Wed February 12, 2014
State Capitol

Ky. Senate Committee Approves Concealed Weapons in Bars

Credit dailykos.com

A bill that would allow bar owners to open their doors to concealed weapons has won approval by a Kentucky Senate committee.  Current state law prohibits anyone to enter a bar with a gun that is not openly visible.

  The bill's sponsor, Senator John Schickel, believes those with concealed weapons, who hold the proper permits should be allowed to bring their weapons, as long as they are not drinking alcoholic beverages.  “The lens I look at that question through is, people who are legally carrying guns should have the right to legally defend themselves," said Schickel.  "Currently they don’t because the government prohibits them from bringing a gun into a bar.  This way, someone who has a legal firearm who’s not drinking, will be able to defend themselves against someone who is disobeying the law."

The Senator from Union,  says Kentuckians love the second amendment and appreciate the right to protect themselves.  Louisville Senator Morgan McGarvey says bar owners could opt to keep the status quo.  “I’ve been assured by the sponsor and legal counsel, the statute as it reads right now does give bar owners the right to keep people out from bringing weapons into their bar,” said McGarvey.

McGarvey believes the vast majority of bar owners in his community would prohibit concealed weapons.  Meanwhile, bill sponsor John Schickel expects a number of bars would opt to implement a new policy allowing concealed weapons.  

Following Tuesday's approval by the Senate Licensing, Occupations and Administrative Regulations Committee, the bill moves to the floor of the Senate for consideration.  The bill easily cleared the committee with little debate.