Guns for Teachers Bill Passes First Senate Panel

Because Florida Republicans can't find a gun violence problem they don't think they can fix with more guns, a new bill that would allow teachers to pack heat in the classroom has passed its first state Senate panel.

SB 968 would allow principals and superintendents to designate certain school employees with concealed carry licenses to bring their firearms to school. The designee would need to 40 hours of school safety program, and 8 hours of active shooting training and 4 hours of firearm proficiency training every year.

However, the bill does not mandate that all school districts adopt the policy, and the ultimate decision would be left with school boards, superintendents and principals.

The bill passed the Criminal Justice subcommittee with a 5-2 vote, with two Democrats voting against the measure.

A similar bill was considered last year but never made it to the Senate floor.

The bill is just one of several backed by the National Rifle Association that could find traction in this year's legislative session. Other NRA-backed bills would expand Stand Your Ground to cover people firing warning shots, prevents schools from disciplining students for playing with simulated weapons, a measure prohibiting insurance companies from discriminating against gun owners and a bill that would allow tax collectors to accept concealed carry applications.

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