Open carry and other new Oklahoma laws start Thursday
BY BARBARA HOBEROCK World Capitol Bureau
Thursday, November 01, 2012
11/01/12 at 8:04 AM
Read more about open carry: Find answers to your questions about Oklahoma’s new gun law.
OKLAHOMA CITY - Some 177 new state laws covering topics such as criminal justice reform, weapons, abortion and veterans will take effect Thursday.
Senate Bill 1733 allows those with a concealed-carry permit to openly carry weapons, a controversial topic among lawmakers for a number of years.
"Oklahoma will soon become one of 44 states that allow some kind of open carry," said Gov. Mary Fallin. "I believe the law is consistent with the spirit of the Second Amendment and that similar laws in other states have shown that open carry can be implemented safely and responsibly. However, it is important that citizens, especially those that plan to openly carry firearms, understand and follow the law."
Privately owned businesses may prohibit weapons, she said.
"These prohibitions must be respected, in addition to the prohibitions on open carry at schools, universities and career technology centers, prisons, in bars, at sporting events or on government property," Fallin said.
Corrections: The highly touted criminal justice reform bill, House Bill 3052, takes effect.
The measure requires those leaving prison for felony convictions to have at least nine months of supervision.
It also creates intermediate revocation facilities for those who have technical violations of probation.
Rather than being shipped back to prison to complete a sentence, technical violators will undergo six months of intensive treatment at the facilities, which are expected to be designated beds inside prison walls.
House Bill 2364 allows the Department of Corrections to sell cell phones or electronic communication devices seized as contraband.
Senate Bill 1069 allows the Department of Corrections to use an inmate's prison account to pay for cremation of the inmate if no one accepts the remains.
Veterans: Senate Bill 138 will allow a veteran to have a special designation on his or her driver's license.
"As a way to honor and recognize the veterans who have served our country, the Department of Public Safety shall make space available in the upper left hand corner of the front of the driver's license and the identification card for a flag emblem and the word 'veteran' to be designed by the Department that will serve as a notation of veteran status," the measure says.
Firefighters: House Bill 2329 bans any person convicted of arson from working or volunteering as a firefighter.
Abortion: House Bill 2381 requires a doctor to be physically present when abortion-inducing drugs are administered.
Meanwhile, Senate Bill 1274, dubbed the "Heartbeat Informed Consent Act," requires abortion providers to offer women the opportunity to hear the heartbeat of the fetus. The original version of the measure would have required abortion providers to make the fetal heartbeat audible to a woman prior to an abortion. The signed version requires the provider to offer a woman the opportunity to hear the heartbeat.
Turnpikes: Senate Bill 1640 sets a flat fine for toll violations at $25.
Previously, the fine increased with additional violations within 18 months of a prior violation. The maximum amount had been $75.
Miscellaneous: Senate Bill 1505 allows the Attorney General's Office to create a witness protection program to pay for living costs, moving expenses, rent and other relocation-related expenses.
House Bill 2388 requires those receiving Temporary Assistance to Needy Families to undergo a drug screening.
House Bill 2396 allows for the extension of protective orders for up to five years. Previously, it had been up to three years.
Open carry Q&A
Oklahoma's amendment to the Oklahoma Self-Defense Act to allow for the open carrying of weapons goes into effect today. The state Legislature and governor approved the changes in the last session. Here are questions and answers about the law:
How does this law change the previous law?
The open carry law allows for people with a valid concealed-carry license to openly carry their weapon. The license is being renamed "handgun" license.
Previously, people with concealed-carry permits were not allowed to carry guns openly.
What guns are allowed to be carried openly with a permit?
If you qualified using a semi-automatic, the license allows you to carry a Derringer, revolver or semi-automatic. If you qualified with a revolver, the license allows for carrying only a revolver.
Do you have to carry your license when you're carrying a gun?
Yes. The law requires a person have the handgun license and a state-issued photo identification while carrying.
Where can I carry openly, and what's restricted?
No guns are allowed in government buildings (local, state and federal); buildings where public officials have a meeting; elementary or secondary schools; college or university property; places where beer or alcohol are consumed; jails or detention centers; arenas during professional sporting events; and places with pari-mutuel betting.
Private business owners have the right to refuse weapons on their property.
Except for any elementary, secondary or vocational school properties, these prohibitions do not apply to parking lots.
What do authorities suggest you do if you see someone carrying a gun but you don't think they have a license?
Only law enforcement officials have the right to request viewing a person's handgun license.
Residents do not have the authority to demand a person present a license. A person can call local law enforcement officials to report a suspicion of a crime.
- Ginnie Graham, World staff writer
Original Print Headline: Open carry, other laws start today
Barbara Hoberock 405-528-2465
Scott Hannaford demonstrates putting a pistol in his holster at his home in Broken Arrow on October 17, 2012. Scott plans to open carry his handgun on Nov. 1, 2012. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World