The Latest: Deal also vetoes bill allowing weapons in church

AP News
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Posted: May 03, 2016 6:51 PM

ATLANTA (AP) — The Latest on legislation to allow anyone with a permit to carry concealed guns/">handguns on Georgia campuses (all times local):

6:30 p.m.

Georgia's Republican governor has rejected legislation permitting people to carry weapons inside churches without penalty.

It would have amended state law, which currently bans guns in churches, to say that people who carry weapons into church would not be in violation of the law as long as they leave the church when told to do so. The proposal is separate from another bill vetoed Tuesday permitting concealed handguns on college campuses.

Deal signed legislation two years ago expanding locations where weapons can be carried. That bill allowed guns in bars. Deal said this year's proposal "breaches a compromise" from that time. Houses of worship should be protected places free of weapons, he said.

Deal said the change would set a bad precedent, allowing ignorance of a law to become an excuse for breaking it.

5:45 p.m.

Georgia's House speaker says he's disappointed that Gov. Nathan Deal, a fellow Republican, has vetoed the "campus carry bill," allowing anyone with a permit to carry concealed handguns on Georgia campuses.

Speaker David Ralston called the legislation "sound and reasonable," and added that it was thoroughly debated.

He said Second Amendment rights are under attack and added, "Georgians should not be required to give up their constitutional rights when they set foot on a college campus."

Deal announced Tuesday that he was vetoing the bill.

Both supporters and opponents of the so-called "campus carry" bill had aggressively lobbied Deal.

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5:30 p.m.

Gov. Nathan Deal has blocked a push to allow anyone with a permit to carry concealed handguns on Georgia campuses.

The Republican governor said Tuesday that he has vetoed the bill, which would have allowed anyone age 21 and over to carry a concealed handgun on campus with the proper permit. Deal had previously voiced his concern for on-campus daycare centers and dually-enrolled students when asking the legislature to reconsider the language of the bill.

Supporters of the bill view it as a way to make campuses safer, while opponents have cited costs for increased safety measures and the impact it would have on higher education.

Nine states have currently passed legislation allowing concealed handguns on campus, including: Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Oregon, Texas, Tennessee, Utah and Wisconsin.

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5:15 p.m.

Gov. Nathan Deal has blocked a push to allow anyone with a permit to carry concealed handguns on Georgia campuses.

The Republican governor said Tuesday that he will veto the bill, which would have allowed anyone age 21 and over to carry a concealed handgun on campus with the proper permit. Deal had previously voiced his concern for on-campus daycare centers and dually-enrolled students when asking the legislature to reconsider the language of the bill.

Supporters of the bill view it as a way to make campuses safer, while opponents have cited costs for increased safety measures and the impact it would have on higher education.

Nine states have currently passed legislation allowing concealed handguns on campus, including: Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Oregon, Texas, Tennessee, Utah and Wisconsin.

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3 a.m.

Georgia's governor must make a decision about legislation allowing concealed handguns on college campuses in the state.

Tuesday marks the deadline for Gov. Nathan Deal to either sign or veto the measure. He told reporters Monday that he won't simply allow it to become effective without his signature, which is permitted under Georgia law.

Deal, a Republican in his final term, wanted lawmakers to pass follow-up legislation limiting access to on-campus day care centers and other spaces. But the GOP-controlled legislature didn't respond, saying the original bill was carefully considered.

Both supporters and opponents of the so-called "campus carry" bill have aggressively lobbied Deal.

He also is expected to act on other closely watched bills Tuesday, including a state Supreme Court expansion and standardized testing limits.