Issue on gun-carrying school employees out of holster again
LITTLE ROCK (KATV) -- Many representatives and senators had several questions Friday about howthe state can approach the future of whether or not to allow school districtsto carry firearms, during a joint judiciary committee meeting.
Only 13 school districts are currently allowed to have armed personnel,but those licenses are not expected to be renewed past 2015.
Not only are legislators looking at what to do with these 13 districts,but also if there's an avenue to have more become licensed. One senator in themeeting made it very clear that come February he's ready to introduce a newbill.
"I plan to offer up a piece of legislation that will givecertification to these schools through a law, and give them a legal right to dothis," said Senator Gary Stubblefield from northwest Arkansas. "Without goingbefore the private investigator board."
Arkansas' president with the Arkansas Association of Superintendents andAdministrators, Dr. David Hopkins, spoke to the judiciary committee about hisproactive concern.
Hopkins is the superintendent of Clarksville School District, one of the13 licensed districts that won't be allowed to continue protecting theirschools with employees after 2015.
"I would like to see every school district, every board that wantsto provide this type of security for their kids, I think they outta be able toput that together," Hopkins told us after the meeting.
Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel gave his opinion some monthsago that he believed it wasn't legal for school employees to carry guns, but ifthis is made a law all of that could change.
On September 11 of this year the State Board of Private Investigatorsand Private Security Agencies voted in favor of renewing licenses for the 13districts, who already had a plan in place, for two additional years.
However, the board denied all new school districts that were applyingfor a license.
No future meeting is set as of now to discuss this issue again.