House panel considering changes to concealed carry gun law

CLEVELAND (AP) — An Ohio House committee on Wednesday considered legislation opposed by law enforcement groups that would drop the requirement for people carrying concealed weapons to say they are armed during interactions with officers.

The bill sponsored by Republicans Rep. Ron Hood, of Ashville, and Rep. Thomas Brinkman Jr., of Cincinnati, would also eliminate requirements for firearms training, background checks and a license before people over 21 can conceal carry.

The House Federalism Committee on Wednesday approved a Republican-sponsored amendment requiring licensed firearm dealers to give gun purchasers a one-page leaflet on Ohio gun laws but had not yet voted whether to move out the entire legislation.

The proposed measure eliminates the “duty to report” requirement that says someone carrying a concealed weapon must inform officers during encounters with law enforcement. It also says police would no longer have grounds to search or detain an “otherwise law-abiding person” for carrying a firearm.

Eliminating the training, background checks and the duty to report provisions rankles law enforcement groups, including the Fraternal Order of Police of Ohio and the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police.

Residents and groups including the Columbus City Attorney’s Office, the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio and the Ohio Prosecuting Attorney’s Association provided written testimony in opposition to the legislation, while pro-gun groups and other residents provided testimony in support.