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North Dakota Gun Laws Provide Interesting Case Nationally

Image: North Dakota Gun Laws Provide Interesting Case Nationally
State Capitol, Bismarck, North Dakota. (Americanspirit/Dreamstime.com)

By    |   Wednesday, 11 Feb 2015 07:02 PM

Gun laws around the country continue to evolve and create controversy, and the proposed North Dakota gun laws are no different. From a legal standpoint, each change in a gun law can create a ripple effect, impacting future laws as precedents are set and lines in the sand are shifted. For this reason, lawmakers around the country are keeping an eye on North Dakota.

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One of the provisions that other states are keeping an eye on is the passage of the so-called "shall-sign" legislation. Typically, in order to own an item regulated by the National Firearms Act, such as a silencer or short-barreled rifle, the application must be signed off on by the local chief law enforcement officer. Some states, such as Utah, Kansas, and Arizona, have passed legislation mandating that the officer must sign the paperwork within a certain period of time unless the applicant is a prohibited person.

In February 2015, North Dakota passed a similar gun law. American Suppressor Association President Knox Williams told Guns.com, "The unanimous passage of SB 2274 by the North Dakota Senate illustrates the growing popularity of 'shall-sign' legislation. Across the country, this issue continues to receive widespread bipartisan support. In the previous year, six states passed 'shall-sign' legislation. This year, we expect to see more."

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Legislatures in other jurisdictions will also be watching HB 1241 and how it dictates where people with carry permits can and cannot carry their concealed weapons. In 2014, South Carolina passed a law that removed state restrictions on people with concealed carry permits from carrying their weapons into places that serve alcohol. That left only Louisiana with a blanket prohibition against carrying a firearm into an establishment where alcohol is served. North Dakota changed its concealed carry law in 2013, but the current bill looks to revise some of that language. HB 1241 modifies the list of exclusions on the law, including language on reciprocity with other states as long as those people aren't drinking or under the influence of alcohol.

Similarly, restrictions are being lifted or modified for other traditional gun free zones, including church functions, parks, political rallies and concerts. Roscoe Streyle, who introduced the bill, asked, "Why do we carve out exemptions on where citizens are allowed to exercise their inalienable rights?" According to Streyle, "As concealed carry permit holders have been found to be more responsible than police officers, this is a 'good first step' for gun law reform."

This article does not constitute legal advice. Check the current gun laws before purchasing or traveling with a firearm.

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Gun laws around the country continue to evolve and create controversy, and the proposed North Dakota gun laws are no different. From a legal standpoint, each change in a gun law can create a ripple effect. For this reason, lawmakers around the country are keeping an eye on North Dakota.
north dakota, gun laws, interesting, nationally
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2015-02-11
Wednesday, 11 Feb 2015 07:02 PM
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