Guns

Wyoming Lawmakers Pass Bill To Allow Guns In Schools

| by Ray Brown

The Wyoming House of Representatives passed a bill that would allow public school employees to carry firearms on campus.

House Bill 194, dubbed The School Safety and Security Act, proposed by Republican state Rep. John Eklund, was passed by in the Wyoming House of Representatives 46 to 14, reported KTVQ.

The bill would allow, "The board of trustees in each school district may adopt rules and regulations to allow the possession of firearms by employees possessing a valid concealed carry permit under W.S. 6-8-104 on or in any property or facility owned or leased by the school district," according to the bill's text via LegiScan.com. "Employees of a school district who hold a valid concealed carry permit issued under W.S. 6-8-104 may carry a concealed firearm on or into any facility of the school district, provided the employing school district has adopted rules and regulations that allow possession of firearms on school property and the employee has received approval by the board of trustees as required by this section."

"I am trusting the school boards around the state to find the right training," Eklund said, according to the Wyoming Tribune Eagle. The bill did not include guidance about training for school staff on gun policies.

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The bill had support among Wyoming Democrats, including Rep. John Freeman, who said he was “very uncomfortable” about having guns in school, but believes the bill could increase safety in rural areas where schools are far from the nearest law enforcement officer.

"I think that this gives small communities some sort of protection," he said.

To become law, the bill will need to pass the Wyoming Senate and the governor would then need to sign it.

The Wyoming House also passed HB 137 to repeal gun-free zones for college campuses and government meetings.

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President Donald Trump's pick for education secretary, Betsy DeVos, was recently criticized for saying guns should be allowed on school campuses because of the threat of grizzly bears, citing Wyoming as an example, according to CBS News.

Although many pundits laughed at DeVos' example, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow told the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, "it’s a really serious matter."

Sources: KTVQ, LegiScan, Wyoming Tribune Eagle, CBS News / Photo credit: Alyeska/Wikimedia Commons

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