Bill to allow concealed weapons in bars advances

Posted June 7, 2012

— Those with concealed weapons permits would be able to carry their guns into bars and other establishments that serve alcohol under a bill approved by a Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday. 

Under current law, concealed weapons are not allowed anywhere that serves alcohol. H 111 would change the law to allow permit holders to carry their weapons as long as they do not drink.

"You cannot have any alcohol in your system if you carry," Rep. Mark Hilton, R-Catawba, the House sponsor of the measure.

The measure would also define areas of parks where cities may ban concealed weapons. A handgun law the General Assembly passed last year allowed for bans in recreational areas but did not define them. Since then, there have been disagreements between gun advocates and cities about where municipalities can ban weapons. 

"This gives a clarification," said Hal Pel, a member of the legislature's bill drafting staff.

Most of the committee discussion Thursday focused on the bar and restaurant provision. 

"You firmly believe, in your heart of hears, that if someone with a concealed weapon goes into a restaurant, they're not going to drink a drop," Sen. Tommy Tucker, R-Union, asked Hilton.

Hilton replied that similar measures have not been a problem in 44 other states where conceal carry permit holders can bring their guns into restaurants.

"Conceal carry permit holders are very law abiding citizens," said Josette Chmiel, who represents Grass Roots North Carolina, a advocacy group for gun owners. Chmiel said that she doesn't drink but sometimes goes to restaurants with her friends.  

"When I leave that restaurant-slash-bar, I am a target," Chmiel said. 

The bill passed on a voice vote and next goes to the Senate Finance Committee. 


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  • justincaseur2 Jun 16, 2012

    The whole thing is seriously silly. To get a CCW you need to show the state that you are an upstanding law abiding citizen. It isn't the law abiding citizen that causes problems with weapons, it's the criminals. To treat law abiding citizens like criminals is absurd. To tell law abiding citizens with CCW permits that they can't carry their gun and have dinner with their family in places like Outback is ridiculous, especially when that criminal in the booth next to you probably has his gun on him.

  • Scare Crow Jun 13, 2012

    hpr641, I think this bill is more aimed at places like Outback, Applebys (I know I spelled that one wrong) and Chillies (that one too) and not Billie Bobs Bar & Grill. However I've also heard that if alcohol sales are 75% of the bars total daily sales then leave the guns home. A CCW is not allowed to drink alcohol in public and carry his/her weapon, that is the law. If a CCW is to go out and party, leave the gun home. Period... However you read the laws concerning CCW NOBODY is on the same page.

  • hpr641 Jun 12, 2012

    Obviously, someone who's going to a bar and planing on throwing a few back (and getting a ride home) should leave his firearms at home (and locked up). However, the ban on concealed weapons in places serving alcohol is SO restrictive that even a veteran military officer home on leave and out for a movie with his wife cannot bring along his side arm (if the movie house serves beer) ... even if the movie house owner has no problem with it.

    Also, those against the measure are VERY hard pressed to find an example of someone who had not been drinking improperly using their concealed firearm in an establishment serving alcohol. Thus, a "solution" in need of a problem.

  • Scare Crow Jun 12, 2012

    I don’t get it! To have a concealed weapons permit (CCW) you have to be fingerprinted, investigated, educated and otherwise indicate that you are a responsible adult . Yet you are treated just like a criminal. I have been “Patted down” by Chatham County Deputies, given nothing but attitude by Apex Police. The NC Highway Patrol is the only law enforcement group that showed some common sense and respect. It’s a shame that it takes so many laws to get everyone on the same page. I carry to protect myself and my family and to exercise my 2nd amendment right. I know my weapon(s) and how to use them. I never heard of a CCW committing a crime. I once asked the Chief of Police of a small Wake County Town if the Castle Doctrine had passed; he didn’t know what I was talking about. Pass H111. LEOs, please educate yourself on this subject. forautumn, you have no idea what you are talking about. Why are you even reading this story?

  • ZeroMPG Jun 12, 2012

    Why are the Republican's bailing on our 2nd amendment rights?

    NC republicans fail to support the NRA and H111.

    I cannot believe that Sen. Tommy Tucker, R-Union asked such a ridiculous question. They have no backbone and have sent the bill to die.

    Where is our leadership? If we can't find it we need to replace it!

  • COPs eye Jun 9, 2012

    Good job, guys! forautumn


  • Bill of Rights Jun 8, 2012

    I voted against amendment one, but I DEFINITELY support this bill.

  • forautumn Jun 8, 2012

    Good work by the Republican's, again, tackling the important, tough issues facing NC. Gay marriage, now guns in bars.

    Good job, guys!