Thursday, June 30, was the signing of Senate Bill 17 (Ohio's Restaurant & Car Carry Rules Fix law) and House Bill 54 (Restoration of Rights), by Republican Governor John Kasich.
"SB17 is critical to Ohio concealed carry license holders, and HB54 is critical to those who have had their Second Amendment rights restored in an Ohio court," observed Buckeye Firearms Association Chairman Jim Irvine. "Ironically, in spite of all the media attention, neither will have any noticeable effect for most of the general public."
"42 of the 48 states that previously allowed concealed carry already permitted license holders to carry in restaurants that serve alcohol," observed Buckeye Firearms Association Legislative Chair Ken Hanson. "Ohio now joins that strong majority.
"Ohio law also allows CHL's to carry into a bar, in that there is no distinction between bars and restaurants in Ohio. While this section is by necessity more liberal than many states, Ohio is more strict than most in placing a strict prohibition on consumption by the license holder, something most states do not do."
Ohio is currently the only state that places onerous restrictions on how a license holder may carry their handguns in automobiles. Most of those restrictions will be repealed when SB17 becomes effective.
Senate Bill 17, sponsored by state Senator Tim Schaffer (R-31), eliminates the current confusing standards of carrying a firearm in a motor vehicle. In addition, this bill also allows permit holders to carry a firearm for self-defense in a restaurant that serves alcohol, provided the individual is not consuming alcohol, thus eliminating another “victim zone” in Ohio.
House Bill 54, sponsored by state Representatives Ron Maag (R-35) and Jarrod Martin (R-70), would bring Ohio in compliance with federal law to provide for the restoration of firearm rights for certain individuals.