Guns-In-Parks Bill Passes Senate 26-7

Guns-In-Parks Bill Passes Senate 26-7

CREATED Feb 13, 2014

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A measure to do away with local government's power to decide whether to allow firearms in public parks has passed the Senate. The measure sponsored by Republican Senator Stacey Campfield of Knoxville was approved 26-7.  

Jackson Democratic Senator Lowe Finney voted against it saying it violates an agreement between gun owners and cities passed in 2009.  

"The opt in or opt out clause that we adopted then was generally seen as a compromise.  Now, here we are five years later taking that away," said Senator Finney.

The Legislature in 2009 gave city and county governments the ability to opt out of a new law that allowed firearms in public parks, playgrounds and sports fields.

Under Campfield's proposal, permit holders would be allowed to carry, unless there's a school function.

Republican Governor Bill Haslam has said he has concerns about the bill.

"He sent me a letter saying he had philosophical differences with it, but hopefully he's reconsidered his position.  So if he vetoes what will you do?  I don't care.  I'll run it again," said Senator Campfield.     

The measure must still pass the House where it sits in a committee.

(NewsChannel 5 And The Associated Press Contributed To This Story)