79ºF

Attempt to revive open-carry bill scuttled

photo

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Senate on Thursday didn't take another shot at reviving a measure that would have allowed people with concealed-weapons licenses to openly carry guns in public places.

Sponsor Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, had proposed attaching the proposal (SB 300) onto a separate bill that aims to lift a ban on the manufacturing or sales of a maritime tool known as a slungshot.

The tool was once a 19th-Century gang weapon. But Gaetz withdrew his amendment because of a Senate rule that bars lawmakers on the Senate floor from tacking language from a bill that has stalled in the committee process onto a separate bill.

"All we have wanted throughout this legislative session was an opportunity to have the debate,'' Gaetz said. "We don't fear the debate. We wanted to have the debate and present the evidence and have the opportunity in the court of public opinion, and on the floor of the Legislature, to make our case."

The open-carry measure -- approved a month ago in the House in a mostly party-line 80-38 vote -- did not get through the Senate Judiciary Committee. T

he slungshot measure (HB 4009) will go before the Senate for a final vote Friday.

The House has unanimously approved the slungshot proposal.