Lawmakers mull guns, sparklers, laborers - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Lawmakers mull guns, sparklers, laborers

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Posted: Friday, February 19, 2010 10:27 am | Updated: 3:30 am, Sat Oct 8, 2011.

LEGISLATIVE BRIEFS

Concealed weapons

State lawmakers gave preliminary approval Thursday to legislation allowing any adult to carry a concealed weapon.

Under current law, only those who have a state permit can have a weapon hidden under a jacket, in a purse or elsewhere. That permit requires completing a state-approved training course on the law and handling the weapon as well as a background check.

SB1102 was drafted by Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, who said the law hobbles only law-abiding citizens, as those who intend to harm or rob don't obey it anyway.

Sen. Ken Cheuvront, D-Phoenix, managed to attach an amendment to require that anyone who sells a weapon at a gun show must first verify the buyer is a U.S. citizen.

That requirement already exists for licensed dealers. But gun shows technically count as swap meets involving individuals selling their own weapons.

Pearce said he will work to strip that change off when the measure goes to the House after a final roll-call vote.

Day laborers

The House voted Thursday to make it more difficult to hire day laborers, a move aimed largely at combating illegal immigration.

HB2042 says a motorist cannot block or impede the flow of traffic while attempting to hire someone to work at a different location. Violators would be subject to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

A similar penalty would apply to individuals who enter a vehicle that is stopped in traffic.

Areas around many home improvement stores are crowded with people who are willing to take odd jobs. Rep. John Kavanagh, R-Fountain Hills, said his measure would not criminalize hiring these people but only ensure that they don't block traffic.

It will go to the Senate after a final vote.

Abusive dating

School officials would have to decide whether to offer information to students on recognizing and dealing with dating abuse under the terms of legislation given preliminary Senate approval on Thursday.

As crafted, SB1308 would have mandated some instruction to students in middle, junior and senior high schools. Sen. Linda Gray, R-Glendale, said teens need to be able to recognize behavior where a dating partner threatens or uses physical, sexual, verbal or emotional abuse to control the other person.

But Gray backed off the mandate after school officials said they already have too many. The measure needs a roll-call vote before going to the House.

Sparklers

Without debate the House gave preliminary approval Thursday to legalizing sparklers.

HB2246 is designed to bring Arizona into line with every other state west of the Mississippi River that permits their use. Prior efforts have been defeated or vetoed amid concerns that they would increase the danger of fires in the state's dry forests.

Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Gilbert, included provisions to allow city councils to ban their use entirely. County supervisors could enact restrictions, too, but only during periods of high fire danger.

Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed a nearly identical measure last year. This bill goes to the Senate after a final vote.

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