Florida Senate Passes Bill 20-18 to Arm Teachers, Rejects Assault Style Weapons Ban
By Space Coast Daily // March 6, 2018
Raises the minimum age to purchase a rifle or a shotgun from 18 to 21
TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA – The Florida Senate narrowly passed 20-18 a gun violence prevention package Monday and voted for a measure to arm some teachers.
The cost of the package is $400 million and the bill and will now go to the Florida House for approval.
The bill allows teachers who perform other duties, such as coaching, to be armed and would provide millions of dollars for mental health and school safety programs.
Bill, SB 7026 INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING PROVISIONS:
• Mobile app called “Fortify Florida,” for students, parents, teachers and others to forward tips on suspicious activity and behavior anonymously. Prohibits a person from making or posting threats about a mass shooting or act of terror, and orders FDLE to create a mobile app to allow the community to relay information about threats.
• Establishes the Marshal Program that allows school districts and law enforcement the option of developing a program for school personnel to undergo 132 hours of training.
• Raises the minimum age to purchase a rifle or a shotgun from 18 to 21.
• Expands the existing three-day waiting period on handguns to apply to all firearms and requiring that the waiting period be extended if the gun background check is not completed. The exceptions to the waiting period are for those who already hold concealed weapons permits and for people who have completed a 16-hour hunter safety course, are law enforcement or correctional officers or are members of the military.
• Bans the use, sale, and possession of bump stocks, which modify semiautomatic firearms to become automatic.
• Establishes the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission beginning in June and lasting for three years. The panel will make recommendations on school safety and understand what went wrong at Douglas High. Members will be appointed by the Legislature, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the governor.
• Creates the Office of Safe Schools, which includes a safety officer in each district and an individual in each school.
• Provides mental health money to serve at-risk children and families in the school system.
• Establishes Safe School officers in each school, including school resource officers as well as the ability for some districts to train and arm teachers or other school personnel to carry concealed weapons.
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