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Panel OKs Bill to Allow Guns in Florida Schools

April 04, 2014  | 

The debate whether safety is worth the risk of having more guns on school campuses took center stage in a Florida House committee, which approved a bill Wednesday that would allow trained officials to carry weapons in schools, reports the Associated Press.

This issue has been argued nationwide since school shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut, Virginia Tech University, Columbine High School in Colorado and others. One side believes armed officials are better equipped to handle an emergency situation. The other argues that more guns in schools only increase the odds of something happening.

The bill (HB 753) approved 8-4 by House Justice Appropriations committee is sponsored by Greg Steube, a Republican from Sarasota. It gives schools the option to appoint former or current law enforcement officers and former or current military officers with state-legislated training to carry firearms on campus.

They would be required to go through 40 hours of school-safety training and eight hours of active-shooter training each year. They also would need four hours of firearm qualification annually.

Tags: School Shootings, Active Shooters, Gun Rights Advocacy, Florida Legislation


Comments (19)

Displaying 1 - 19 of 19

Jeanne Baker @ 4/5/2014 5:50 AM

Good job, Steube! Sarasota has some great former LEOs and military people and this will be a monumental step forward toward keeping our children and grandchildren safe!

jon @ 4/5/2014 6:47 AM

About time people are realizing that "Gun Free Zones" attract criminals looking to cause harm to the unarmed. Great job!!! Hopefully more people & states will wake up to this truth and put and end to these shooting galleries by removing all gun free zones...

TB @ 4/5/2014 8:38 AM

I hate the Statist comment from policemag "safety worth the risk". News Flash!! Safety is NOT RISKED BY MORE GUNS. Safety is Risked by LESS guns!! Drop the PC BS and join the adult world of real solutions.

GP Cobb @ 4/5/2014 10:42 AM

Me thinks I'll vote with the other two, so 3:1 on the TB comment.

marcelo @ 4/5/2014 7:05 PM

Great job! I believe they made the right decision based on real life situations rather than on denial and fantasy which have made schools a turkey shoot for every nut job coming out of the woodwork!

D. Edward @ 4/6/2014 2:02 AM

This bill should be a model for every school district in the country to follow. It's hard to believe that so many school administrators really think that promoting a gun free zone will lessen crime. If we declared the US a crime free zone, would this lead to the end of all crime and put law enforcement out of business? I wonder why not?

Capt. Crunch @ 4/6/2014 9:24 AM

It's about time something like this happen, students need to be safe in our schools. Good going Florida.

Keith Broughton @ 4/7/2014 5:08 AM

I would imagine that the most precious thing in our lives is our children and how a reasonable person can argue against having a trained person in a position to defend them if someone is trying to kill them is ridiculous.

Keith Broughton @ 4/7/2014 5:25 AM

I would imagine that the most precious thing in our lives is our children and how a reasonable person can argue against having a trained person in a position to defend them if someone is trying to kill them is ridiculous.

Sam Soprano @ 4/7/2014 6:10 AM

Great job Florida. It is now time for the rest of the Country to open their eyes to the fact that trained armed security within our schools is the best answer for the safety of our children.

Sam Soprano @ 4/7/2014 6:12 AM

Great job Florida. It is now time for the rest of the Country to open their eyes to the fact that trained armed security within our schools is the best answer for the safety of our children.

Sam Soprano @ 4/7/2014 6:12 AM

Great job Florida. It is now time for the rest of the Country to open their eyes to the fact that trained armed security within our schools is the best answer for the safety of our children.

Susan Freel @ 4/7/2014 8:09 AM

TB: "safety worth the risk" was not a Statist comment by Policemag. If you read the piece over again, you'll notice the source of the story was taken from the Associated Press and placed on Policemag.com. Just an FYI..

tedb @ 4/7/2014 10:25 AM

Regarding TB's comment above, I'm not so sure we all took it right at the first reading. Although a complex statement, it appears that, in using "safety" as the object of the sentence, he/she may actually be in support of our common position. I must admit my initial reaction was harsh, until I really looked at the statement. TB, care to clarify for us?

tedb @ 4/7/2014 10:25 AM

Regarding TB's comment above, I'm not so sure we all took it right at the first reading. Although a complex statement, it appears that, in using "safety" as the object of the sentence, he/she may actually be in support of our common position. I must admit my initial reaction was harsh, until I really looked at the statement. TB, care to clarify for us?

tedb @ 4/7/2014 10:25 AM

Regarding TB's comment above, I'm not so sure we all took it right at the first reading. Although a complex statement, it appears that, in using "safety" as the object of the sentence, he/she may actually be in support of our common position. I must admit my initial reaction was harsh, until I really looked at the statement. TB, care to clarify for us?

PC9741 @ 4/9/2014 4:37 PM

Step 1: Observe Israeli schools. Step 2: Do what they do.

Eddie @ 4/11/2014 10:35 AM

Former or off duty Law Enforcement or Military members at schools with concealed weapons who will only make themselves known when only the most horrible situations arise.

I already volunteer at my children's schools for trips and field day activities when I can on my days off. As a Full time, State Certified, Law Enforcement Officer in the State of Florida ....they already unknowingly get this protection when I'm there.

I don't see a damn thing wrong with it !

Ima Leprechaun @ 4/17/2014 11:45 PM

General Bill by Judiciary Committee and Justice Appropriations Subcommittee and K-12 Subcommittee and Steube (CO-SPONSORS) Adkins; Artiles; Combee; Eagle; Raburn
School Safety: Permits school superintendent, with approval of the school board, to authorize school safety designee to carry concealed weapon or firearm on school property; provides requirements for school safety designees; provides exception to prohibition on possession of firearms or other specified devices on school property or other specified areas; provides for fingerprint processing & retention; requires that fees be borne by school safety designee or school; requires school boards to formulate policies & procedures for dealing with active shooters & hostage situations in consultation with law enforcement; requires district school boards & private schools allow campus tours by local law enforcement agencies for specified purposes & that their recommendations be documented; permits district school boards to commission one or more school safety officers on each school campus.
Effective Date: July 1, 2014

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