The Main Stream

Apr 17, 2012 9:34 PM

Governor vetoes bill allowing guns in buildings

PHOENIX (AP) - Gov. Jan Brewer has vetoed a bill that would have allowed guns in public buildings.

The governor's office announced the veto Tuesday. The bill proposed permitting gun owners to carry firearms into government facilities that lacked security.

The bill would have required the use of law enforcement officers or armed security guards with metal detectors or X-ray machines. Signs and storage lockers would also be needed.

In her veto letter, Brewer said the decision to allow guns into "sensitive places such as schools and government buildings" should be a decision reached cooperatively by citizens, law enforcement officials and local government leaders.

Supporters of the bill say citizens have a right to defend themselves.

Opponents of the bill say the measure would come at a huge cost to cities and towns.

Similarly, Brewer expressed concerns about the financial impact on jurisdictions across the state.

"They would face this choice: Either spend untold dollars in order to provide their officials and employees the same level of protection that we have at the Arizona State Capitol complex, or accept weapons on the premises," Brewer wrote.

Brewer also said the bill would have led to confusion as to which public buildings accept or ban weapons.

Brewer vetoed a similar bill last year. She said this version failed to address the majority of her previous concerns.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, nine states have similar gun laws to what Arizona lawmakers had proposed.

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