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Sat Dec 31, 2016, 07:25 AM

Gun issues to get quick airing in Senate

State lawmakers next month will have their first chance to discuss a controversial measure that would expand how and where Florida's more than 1.67 million concealed-weapons license holders can carry handguns.

The Senate Judiciary Committee, chaired by Sen. Greg Steube, is scheduled Jan. 10 to take up the measure (SB 140), which would allow people with concealed-weapons licenses to openly carry handguns in public and also would allow them to be armed on college and university campuses. Under the bill, they also could carry guns at airport passenger terminals; in elementary and secondary schools; and at legislative and local government meetings.

Steube is sponsoring the bill, which is matched in part by separate proposals in the House. During the 2016 session, open-carry and campus-carry measures failed to advance through the Senate Judiciary Committee, which was chaired by former Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, R-Miami. He lost a re-election bid in November.

The campus-carry proposal has been opposed by university and college leaders, campus law-enforcement officials and faculty members. Also on the Jan. 10 agenda is a measure (SB 128) that would shift the burden of proof in "stand your ground" self-defense cases. The bill would shift the burden of proof to prosecutors during evidentiary hearings in such cases.

Read more: http://www.tallahassee.com/story/news/politics/2016/12/30/gun-issues-get-quick-airing-senate/96014472/

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