A Productive Session for Firearms from the Missouri Legislature

I doubt that it’s a record but the Missouri Legislature produced a bumper crop of legislation this year—bills that reined in the scope of the FedGov while addressing school safety and increasing the state’s support for the 2nd Amendment.

The summary below was created by Marc Perez, a Missouri 2nd Amendment activist.

HCS/SB 75 – This act modifies provisions relating to public safety.

SHERIFFS: This act provides that no person will be eligible for the office of sheriff unless he or she holds a valid peace officer license under Chapter 590. Any person filing for the office must have the license at the time of filing. These provisions do not apply to St. Louis County or St. Louis City. (Section 57.010)

Every sheriff must maintain, house, and issue concealed carry permits beginning January 1, 2014. (Section 57.100)

The sheriff of any first class county not having a charter form of government, second class county, third class county, or fourth class county may employ an attorney to aid and advise the sheriff in the discharge of his or her duties and represent him or her in court. (Section 57.104)

Under current law, prisoners in a county jail must pay the costs of their board. This act requires the circuit clerk in each county to report to the Office of State Courts Administrator the names of people certified by the sheriff as being delinquent in the payment of money owed for a period of imprisonment in a county jail. Whenever a person has satisfied his or her debt or begun making regular payments to the sheriff, the sheriff must notify the clerk that the person is no longer considered delinquent. (Section 221.070)

The sheriff of any county may establish and operate a canteen or commissary in the county jail for the use and benefit of the prisoners. The revenues received from the canteen or commissary must be kept in a separate account and must be used to acquire the goods sold and other minimum expenses of operation. Any excess moneys must be deposited in the Inmate Prisoner Detainee Security Fund. (Section 221.102)

These provisions are substantially similar to HCS/HB 464 (2013) and HCS/SCS/SB 42 (2013).

ASIRT: This act establishes the Active Shooter and Intruder Response Training for Schools Program (ASIRT).

By July 1, 2014, each school district and charter school may train teachers and school employees on how to respond to students with information about a threatening situation and how to address a potentially dangerous or armed intruder or active shooter in the school or on school property.

Training may be conducted on an annual basis. Initial training may be eight hours in length and continuing training may be four hours in length. All school personnel must annually participate in a simulated active shooter and intruder response drill conducted by law enforcement professionals, as described in the act.

Program instructors must be certified by the Department of Public Safety’s Peace Officers Standards Training Commission. (Section 170.315)

EDDIE EAGLE GUNSAFE PROGRAM: Each school district and charter school may annually teach the Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program to first grade students, or use a substantially similar or successor program of the same qualifications.

The purpose of the program will be to promote safety and protection of children and emphasize how students should respond if they encounter a firearm. School personnel and program instructors must not make value judgments about firearms. Firearms are prohibited from the teaching of the program. Students with disabilities will participate to the extent appropriate. (Section 171.410)

FIREARMS OWNERSHIP RECORDS: Any records of ownership of a firearm or applications for ownership or an endorsement that allows a person to own, acquire, possess, or carry a firearm are not open records and will not be open for inspection except by order of the court to persons having a legitimate interest. Any person who violates this provision is guilty of a class A misdemeanor. (Section 571.011)

CONCEALED CARRY PERMITS: Under current law, a person seeking to carry concealed firearms must apply to the sheriff for a certificate of qualification for a concealed carry endorsement. Upon the issuance of the certificate, the person must then present the certificate to the Department of Revenue, which issues a driver’s licenses or nondriver’s licenses with a concealed carry endorsement.

This act repeals the provisions requiring the person to present the certificate to the Department of Revenue for a driver’s license or nondriver’s license with a concealed carry endorsement. Instead, the permit issued by the sheriff authorizes the person to carry concealed firearms. (Section 571.101)

Concealed carry permits will be valid for five years from the date of issuance or renewal. A concealed carry endorsement issued prior to August 28, 2013 must continue for a period of three years from the date of issuance or renewal, as described in the act. (Section 571.101)

This act changes the eligibility requirements for a concealed carry permit. Non-citizens who are United States permanent residents are eligible. Currently, an applicant must not have pled guilty or pled no contest to certain crimes punishable by a prison term of one year or less. This act increases the prison term to two years. This act adds closed records to the documents in which a person cannot have engaged in a pattern of behavior considered dangerous to obtain a concealed carry permit.

Applicants must also not otherwise be prohibited from possessing a firearm under section 571.070 or 18 U.S.C. 922(g). If an applicant is not a U.S. citizen, the application must include his or her country of citizenship and any alien or admission number issued by the federal Bureau of Customs and Immigration Enforcement.

An applicant must show a government-issued photo identification only for the purpose of verifying the person’s identify for permit renewal. (Section 571.101)

The concealed carry permit must specify only the following information: the permit holder’s name, address, date of birth, gender, height, weight, color of hair, color of eyes, and signature; the signature of the issuing sheriff; the date of issuance; and the expiration date. (Section 571.101) The permit must be no larger than two inches wide by three and one-fourth inches and must be of a uniform style. The permit must be assigned a Missouri uniform law enforcement system county code and must be stored in sequential number. (Section 571.101)

Biometric data is prohibited from being collected from the applicant. The sheriff must perform an inquiry of the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. If no disqualifying information is identified, the sheriff must issue the permit.

However, if the required background checks are not completed within forty-eight hours and no disqualifying information has come to the sheriff’s attention, the sheriff must issue a permit. The permit will be valid until the sheriff issues or denies the certificate of qualification. If the background checks identify a disqualifying record, the sheriff must revoke the permit. (Section 571.101)

Sheriffs must keep a record of all applications for concealed carry permits or permits. Any record of an application that is incomplete or denied must be kept for a period not to exceed one year. Records of approved applications must be kept for one year after the expiration and non-renewal of the permit.

Beginning August 28, 2013, the Department of Revenue must not keep any records of applications for concealed carry permits. Any information collected by the Department of Revenue related to an application for a concealed carry endorsement prior to August 28, 2013 must be given to MoSmart and the sheriff of the county in which the applicant resides. (Section 571.101)

Certain personal protected information is required to not be batch processed for query and is only available for a single entry query if an individual is a subject of interest in an active criminal investigation or is arrested for a crime. In addition, the distribution of bulk downloads or batch data to federal, state, or private entities is prohibited, except to MoSmart as provided in the act. Any state agency that has retained any documents or records, including fingerprint records provided for a concealed carry endorsement prior to August 28, 2013 must destroy them upon successful issuance of a permit. (Section 571.101)

For purposes of chapter 571, the term “concealed carry permit” will include any concealed carry endorsement issued by the Department of Revenue before January 1, 2014 and any concealed carry document issued by any sheriff or under the authority of any sheriff after December 31, 2013. (Section 571.101)

If a permit holder is convicted, as described in the act, the court must forward the permit to the issuing sheriff. (Section 571.104)

To renew a concealed carry permit, a renewal application must be completed. In lieu of the fingerprint requirements and firearms safety training, the applicant need only display his or her current concealed carry permit. A name-based background check, including an inquiry of the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, must be done for each renewal.

The process for renewing a concealed carry endorsement issued prior to August 28, 2013 will be the same as for renewing a concealed carry permit except that the applicant need only display his or her current driver’s license or nondriver’s license containing an endorsement in lieu of the fingerprint and firearms safety training requirement. (Section 571.104)

Late fees assessed for a renewal and notice of expired certificates to the Missouri uniform law enforcement system and the individual are extended to concealed carry permits. Also, when a permit or endorsement holder’s permanent address changes and he or she reports the address change to the sheriffs, the sheriff of the new jurisdiction may charge a fee for processing not to exceed ten dollars.

If the person has a concealed carry endorsement issued prior to August 28, 2013, he or she must also furnish proof to the Department of Revenue. The sheriff must report the residence change to the Missouri uniform law enforcement system. A ten dollar fee may be charged for the replacement of a lost or destroyed permit or a driver’s license or nondriver’s license containing a concealed carry endorsement.

A sheriff may charge a fee not to exceed ten dollars for name changes. The sheriff must report the name change to the Missouri uniform law enforcement system. (Section 571.104) This act repeals the requirement that a concealed carry endorsement suspension be reinstated at the time of the individual’s driver’s license. (Section 571.107)

FIREARMS SAFETY INSTRUCTION: This act reduces, from fifty to twenty, the number of minimum rounds of live firing an applicant must do to receive a certificate of firearms safety training course completion by a qualified firearms safety instructor. Certificates from a firearms safety instructor course approved by the Department of Public Safety must be notarized.

This act allows a qualified firearms safety instructor to submit a copy of a training instructor certificate, course outline bearing a notarized signature of the instructor, and recent photograph to the sheriff of the county in which he or she resides. The sheriff must collect an annual ten dollar fee from an instructor who chooses to submit the information and must retain a database of qualified instructors.

This information will be a closed record except for access by any sheriff. Any firearms safety instructor who violates any provision of section 571.111 will be prohibited from instructing concealed carry permit classes and issuing certificates. (Section 571.111)

OTHER CONCEALED CARRY CHANGES: The forms used to petition a court to revoke an individual’s concealed carry permit or endorsement will be updated to incorporate changes in the law, including: the previously mentioned allowable increase in prison term from one year to years’ imprisonment; the effect of the issuance of a provisional certificate of qualification; and disqualification based on 18 U.S.C. 922(g). (Section 571.114)

The term “concealed carry endorsement” is replaced, or supplemented with, the phrase “concealed carry permit” throughout to reflect the change from the issuance of a concealed carry endorsement to a concealed carry permit. The terms “provisional certificate of qualification” and “certificate of qualification” are changed to “permit.”

In addition, “permanent resident” is added in conjunction with “United States citizen” or “U.S. citizen.” (Sections 50.535, 302.181, 571.030, 571.037, 571.107, 571.114, 571.121)

PROHIBITION ON SHARING RECORDS OR DEVELOPING DATABASES WITH THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT: This prohibits state agencies, departments, contractors and agents working for the state from constructing, enabling, maintaining, participating in, developing or cooperating with the state or federal government in developing a database or record of the number or type of firearms, ammunition, or firearms accessories that an individual possesses. This provision is also contained in HCS/HB 787 (2013). (Section 571.500)

MOSMART: Any information collected by the Department of Revenue related to a concealed carry endorsement must be given to the members of MoSmart. In addition, on August 28, 2013, the Department of Revenue must begin transferring any records related to the issuance of a concealed permit to MoSmart for dissemination to sheriffs. (Sections 571.101 & 650.350)

This act creates the “Concealed Carry Permit Fund” within the state treasury. The director of the Department of Public Safety must distribute all funds annually in the form of grants approved by MoSMART. The Department must administer all MoSMART grant deposits. Grant funds must be spent first to ensure county law enforcement agencies’ ability to comply with the issuance of conceal carry endorsements, including but not limited to, equipment, records management hardware and software, personnel, supplies, and other services. (Section 650.350)

REPEALED SECTION: This act repeals section 571.102, which governed the effective date of the law based on the date when the Department of Revenue begins issuing nondriver licenses with conceal carry endorsements. (Section 571.102)

This act contains an emergency clause on Section 650.350. (MoSmart) Provisions in this act are similar to HCS/SS/SB 252 (2013) and HCS/HB 787 (2013).

SCS HCS HB 436 — FIREARMS: This bill changes the laws regarding firearms. SECOND AMENDMENT PRESERVATION ACT The bill establishes the Second Amendment Preservation Act which specifies that although several states have granted supremacy to laws and treaties under the powers granted under the United States Constitution, the supremacy does not apply to federal laws that restrict or prohibit the manufacture, ownership, and use of firearms, firearm accessories, or ammunition exclusively within the state except to the extent that they are necessary for the regulation of the land and naval forces of the United States Armed Forces.

The bill specifies that all past, present, or future federal acts, laws, orders, rules, or regulations that infringe on the people’s right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article I, Section 23 of the Missouri Constitution are invalid, will not be recognized, are specifically rejected, and will be considered null and void and of no effect in this state. It is the duty of the courts and law enforcement agencies of the state to protect the rights of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms within the borders of the state, and no public officer or employee of the state has any authority to enforce or attempt to enforce any of the infringements on the right.

Any official, agent, or employee of the federal government who enforces or attempts to enforce any of the infringements on the right is guilty of a class A misdemeanor. Any state citizen who has been subject to an effort to enforce any of the infringements on the right to keep and bear arms under these provisions will have a private cause of action for declaratory judgment and for damages against any person or entity attempting the enforcement.

OPEN CARRY OF FIREARMS – (My personal contribution—Marc Perez.)  In any jurisdiction that prohibits the open carry of a firearm by ordinance, the prohibition is lifted if the person has a valid concealed carry endorsement from this state or a permit from another state that is recognized by this state in his or her possession at all times, he or she displays the endorsement or permit upon the demand of a law enforcement officer, and the firearm being openly carried is 16 inches or less in overall length. In the absence of any reasonable and articulable suspicion of criminal activity, a person carrying a concealed or unconcealed handgun cannot be disarmed or physically restrained by a law enforcement officer unless under arrest. Any concealed carry endorsement holder who violates these requirements may be issued a citation for an amount of up to $35, but it will not be a criminal offense.

SCHOOL PROTECTION OFFICERS: Any school district may designate one or more elementary or secondary school teachers or administrators as a school protection officer, whose responsibilities and duties are voluntary and in addition to their normal responsibilities and duties. Any compensation for serving as a school protection officer must be funded by the local school district without using state funds.

The bill authorizes a school protection officer to carry concealed firearms in any school in the district, but he or she must keep the firearm on his or her person at all times while on school property. A person violating these provisions must be removed immediately from the classroom and is subject to employment termination proceedings.

A school protection officer may detain any person the officer sees violating or any person who the officer has reasonable grounds to believe has violated any state law or school policy. Any person detained for violation of a state law must, as soon as practically possible, be turned over to a law enforcement officer. Any person detained for a violation of a school policy must be turned over to a school administrator as soon as practically possible. However, a person cannot be detained for more than four hours.

The bill specifies the requirements to be designated as a school protection officer, including requesting the designation in writing to the school district superintendent, holding a valid concealed carry endorsement, and submitting a certificate of school protection officer training program completion from a program approved by the Director of the Department of Public Safety. Any school district that designates a teacher or administrator as a school protection officer must notify the department director in writing within 30 days that includes specified information.

A school district may revoke the designation of a person as a school protection officer for any reason. The district must immediately notify the person in writing and must notify the department director in writing within 30 days of the revocation. The department director must maintain a listing of all persons designated as a school protection officer and make the list available to all law enforcement agencies. However, any identifying information collected is not considered public information and is not subject to an information request under the Open Meetings and Records Law, commonly known as the Sunshine Law.

Any school employee who discloses any information to anyone, other than those authorized to receive it, will be guilty of a class B misdemeanor and will be subject to employment termination proceedings within the school district. Currently, a person with a valid concealed carry endorsement cannot carry a concealed firearm in any higher education institution or elementary or secondary school facility without the consent of the governing body or a school official or the district school board. The bill exempts any teacher or administrator of an elementary or secondary school who has been designated by his or her school district as a school protection officer and is carrying a firearm in a school within that district from the requirement of obtaining consent. The substitute requires the Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission must establish minimum standards for the training of school protection officers, the minimum number of hours of training, and the curriculum for training programs and specifies the minimum training requirements. The commission must also establish minimum standards for school protection officer training instructors, training centers, and training programs.

The director of the commission must develop and maintain a list of approved school protection officer training instructors, centers, and programs and make the list available to every school district in the state. The bill specifies the information that must be submitted by each person seeking entrance into a school protection officer training center or program. A certificate of school protection officer training program completion may be issued to any applicant by any approved instructor affirming that the person has taken and passed a program that meets all requirements specified in the bill and that the person has a valid concealed carry endorsement.

FIREARM OWNERSHIP INFORMATION: A person or entity cannot publish the name, address, or other identifying information of any individual who owns a firearm or who is an applicant for or holder of any license, certificate, permit, or endorsement that allows the person to own, acquire, possess, or carry a firearm. Any person or entity violating these provisions is guilty of a class A misdemeanor.

A licensed health care professional cannot be required by law to inquire if a patient owns a firearm, document or maintain in a patient’s medical records if the patient owns a firearm, or notify any governmental entity of the identity of a patient based solely on his or her status as a firearm owner. These provisions cannot be construed as prohibiting or restricting a health care professional from requesting or documenting the information if it is necessitated or medically indicated by the professional’s scope of practice and it does not violate any other state or federal law.

CONCEALED CARRY ENDORSEMENTS: The bill changes the minimum age at which a person can be issued a concealed carry endorsement from 21 years of age to 19 years of age.

SURRENDER OF FIREARMS: No county, municipality, or other governmental body or an agent of the entity may participate in any program in which an individual is given a thing of value in exchange for surrendering a firearm to the entity unless it has adopted a resolution, ordinance, or rule authorizing the participation in the program and the resolution, ordinance, or rule provides that any firearm received must be offered for sale or trade to a licensed firearms dealer. The proceeds from any sale or gains from a trade must be the property of the entity unless the proceeds are collected by a sheriff, in which case the proceeds must be deposited in the county sheriff’s revolving fund. Any firearm remaining in the possession of the entity after it has been offered for sale or trade to at least two licensed firearms dealers must be destroyed.

HB 533 — FIREARMS This bill specifies that a person who is found guilty or pleads guilty or nolo contendere to a prior felony offense and who commits a subsequent felony offense in which the person possesses, displays, brandishes, threatens to use, attempts to use, or discharges any firearm will be guilty of the offense of unlawful possession or use of a firearm during the commission of a felony. The offense will be in addition to and not in lieu of any underlying felony offense or other offense for which the person may be charged. The bill specifies that a person who commits the offense by possessing a firearm during the commission of a felony will be subject to 10 years imprisonment; by displaying, brandishing, threatening to use, or attempting to use a firearm during the commission of a felony will be subject to 20 years imprisonment; and by discharging a firearm during the commission of a felony will be subject to a term of life imprisonment. The terms of imprisonment must be imposed consecutively to any other terms of imprisonment imposed for any other felony offense.

The bill exempts law enforcement officers or United States military personnel who are performing their lawful duties or who are traveling to or from their places of employment or assignment from these provisions.

The bill specifies that a person commits the crime of unlawful use of weapons if he or she knowingly possesses a firearm while also knowingly in possession of controlled substances that are sufficient for a felony violation.

This bill specifies that the state cannot prohibit any state employee from having a firearm in his or her vehicle on state property, provided the vehicle is locked and the firearm is not visible. These provisions apply only to the state as an employer, when the state employee’s vehicle is on property owned or leased by the state, and the state employee is conducting activities within the scope of his or her employment.

That’s a long list. I congratulate Marc Perez for documenting all the firearms related changes passed during this session. These bills are now on Governor Jay Nixon’s desk. Early reports appeared to indicate that he would veto these bills en mass. That would require another legislative vote during the Legislature’s Veto Override session in September.

However, a new report as been published that opines that Nixon will let the bills sit, unsigned nor vetoed. That action will allow the bills to pass by default.

On May 22, the Second Amendment Preservation Act (HB 436) was sent to Governor Jay Nixon. As of this writing, Nixon, a Democrat, has not indicated whether he plans to veto or sign the bill.

Earlier this month, both houses of the Republican-controlled state legislature passed the bill by an overwhelming majority.

When asked about Governor Nixon’s intention, a source inside his office told The New American that in an effort to avoid multiplying the several scandals already plaguing his administration, Nixon would likely let the bill sit on his desk without signing or vetoing it, thus allowing the measure to become law without his participation. — The New American.

Yes, a very productive session this year, indeed!