Legislators urged to prohibit landlords from restricting firearm ownership
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Legislators urged to prohibit landlords from restricting firearm ownership

Date: March 4, 2014
By: Xavier Crayton-Bradford
State Capitol Bureau
Links: HB 1778

JEFFERSON CITY - The House General Laws Committee was urged to prohibit landlords from restricting firearms on rented property.

The  bill, heard by the committee Tuesday, March 4, would provide that a leaser could legally keep a weapon and not be in violation of the lease agreement. The bill also would provide that a landlord would not be responsible for damage cause by the tenant's use or possession of a firearm.

The bill's sponsor is Rep. Jeanie Riddle, R-Mokane.

"I even have a directive from the St. Louis County house authority that instructs its managers and landlords to included a weapons prohibition in their lease agreement," Riddle told the House committee.

"As of 2012, census records show 7 percent of all Missourians rent apartments, that is a significant amount of the population that would have their Second Amendment rights violated and unable to defend themselves in a dangerous situation."

Rep. Mike Colona, D-St. Louis City, said that private property owners have their own rights as well.

"Government intrusion of regulation is one thing, but there's nothing that prohibits me as a private citizen owning a building discriminating against a gun owner if I want to," Colona said. "So its not a governmental intrusion for me as a private citizen to prohibit guns on my property, why do you want to tell me what to do with my private property?"

 The committee took no immediate action on the measure. It is one of several filed in the legislature to expand firearm rights in Missouri.

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