Expanding statutory disqualifiers and sensitive place designations in the wake of a recent U.S. Supreme Court Decision
It’s clear that gun violence is rampant across the country. No longer confined to urban cities, it is one of the hottest topics facing state legislatures. Just last month, Governor Phil Murphy took another step in this highly debated issue and signed a bill that strengthens laws regarding public carry permits while maintaining the constitutional rights established in the Second Amendment.
Gov. Murphy moved swiftly after the U.S. Supreme Court decision in N.Y. State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen, which made showing “justifiable need” to carry a handgun no longer a valid requirement. He quickly proposed a bill to mitigate the possible impact of the Supreme Court’s ruling on the safety of New Jersey residents, specifically expanding regulations with statutory disqualifiers and “sensitive place” designations.
At a glance, an abbreviated list reflects the expansive nature of this law:
- Persons with an outstanding arrest warrant for an indictable offense;
- Persons subject to certain restraining orders, including persons who have violated either a temporary or a final restraining order;
- Persons subject to restraining orders in other jurisdictions;
- Persons subject to voluntary admissions to mental institutions or hospitals.
- Entertainment venues, including stadiums, arenas, amusement parks, casinos, racetracks, and publicly owned libraries and museums
- Youth sporting events and other recreational facilities, such as public parks, beaches, and playgrounds
- Bars, restaurants where alcohol is served, and any other locations that serve alcohol for on-premises consumption
- Airports and public transportation hubs
Locations with vulnerable populations
- Schools, colleges, and universities
- Daycare and child-care facilities
- Hospitals and health care facilities
- Long-term care facilities and nursing homes
- Correctional facilities, juvenile justice facilities, and halfway houses
- Homeless shelters
Locations with governmental and First Amendment activity
- Polling places
- Law enforcement stations and offices
- Government buildings and locations with government meetings
- Demonstrations, protests, and licensed public gatherings
Other key features of the law include:
- With the exception of law enforcement and private security, firearms cannot be carried on private property without the owner’s clear communication, consent or signage.
- Permit applications require four (4) character endorsements from non-related persons and both the applicant and endorsers are subject to an interview with law enforcement.
- Gun permit holders must “maintain and provide proof of liability insurance with coverage for at least $300,000 on account of injury, death, or damage to property arising out of ownership, maintenance, operation, or use of a firearm.”
- The longstanding handgun permit application fee of $2 has been raised to $25 – a fee that has not been changed for more than 50 years (1966).
It remains unclear if other states will enact similar legislation in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in N.Y. State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen – balancing protections afforded by the Second Amendment and strengthening the laws needed to curb gun violence in communities across the United States.
At Neff & Sedacca, P.C., we are committed to providing strategically-sound, aggressive defense for our clients. We also continue to constantly monitor the on-going changes in criminal law impacting the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and neighboring New Jersey. If you are facing charges related to the license to carry or have questions regarding your rights in criminal legal matters, you should seek experienced legal counsel. To schedule a confidential consultation with the attorneys at Neff & Sedacca, P.C., contact the firm by phone at 215-563-9800 or email email@example.com.