County Council Expected to Vote Today on Weapons-Firearms in or Near Places of Public Assembly

by MCS Staff

The Montgomery County Council will will meet on Tuesday, November 15 at 9am and is expected to vote on Expedited Bill 21-22, Weapons – Firearms in or Near Places of Public Assembly, which would prohibit the possession of firearms in or near places of public assembly, with certain exemptions. In addition, the bill would remove an exemption that allows individuals with certain handgun permits to possess handguns within 100 yards of a place of public assembly.

Per the Montgomery Council press release: The goal of this bill is to reduce gun violence in Montgomery County. The lead sponsor is Council President Albornoz. All other Councilmembers are cosponsors. In the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision of New York State Rifle & Pistol Assn. v. Bruen, Superintendent of new York State Police, the Supreme Court overturned a requirement of New York’s handgun carry law. The New York law had required an applicant for a handgun carry license to show proper cause for the license, and the Supreme Court held that the requirement violated the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms. The Court explained, however, that longstanding laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places, such as schools and government buildings, are constitutionally permissible.

Like New York, Maryland has a proper-cause requirement for wear-and-carry handgun licenses. Gov. Larry Hogan, in response to Bruen, instructed the Maryland State Police not to enforce the proper-cause element of the Maryland law. As a result of the Supreme Court ruling and Gov. Hogan’s order to the Maryland State Police, more individuals in Maryland likely will carry firearms, regardless of whether the individuals have a good or substantial reason to carry them.

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