On March 25, West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (D) signed Senate Bill 317 into law which “[eliminates] city gun ordinances,” making state law predominant.
According to The State Journal, Tomblin said he signed the bill to “support 2nd Amendment rights” and establish “uniform and consistent gun laws throughout the state.”
Some municipally-owned recreation centers showed immediate concern over the signing of the bill, especially those who had set their own rules on the carrying of guns on their premises. Under SB 317, West Virginians with “concealed-carry permits can bring their guns into recreation centers as long as they are securely stored and out of view and access to others.”
Charleston Mayor Danny Jones plans to bring suit against the new law in Kanawha County Circuit Court. He hopes the court will rule that recreation centers in Charleston are part of the Kanawha County School System, which would omit them from SB 317 and make it felony to carry a gun in the centers.
“If we do not prevail, we hope there will be no trouble at the recreation centers,” Jones said. “If there are either shootings or shootouts, we hope none of the innocent children that take part in the programs there are hit with any stray rounds of ammunition.”
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