Bill to Let Alabama Teachers Carry Guns Wins Committee Approval

Teachers who train and qualify could have guns in school under a bill approved this morning by an Alabama House of Representatives committee.

The bill by Rep. Will Ainsworth, R-Guntersville, is one of the proposals sparked by the mass shooting that killed 17 people at a Florida high school on Feb. 14.

The House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee approved it on a 5-4 vote. The bill is still a long way from becoming law. It would have to pass the House and Senate.

The committee heard pros and cons about arming teachers during a public hearing on Wednesday. 

The committee adopted a new version of Ainsworth's bill this morning before approving it. Ainsworth said it combined his bill with parts of another by Rep. Allen Farley, R-McCalla. Farley's bill would have allowed school systems to set up volunteer emergency teams under the supervision of county sheriffs and police chiefs.

Farley asked the committee to set his bill aside this morning.

Voting for Ainsworth's bill in committee this morning were Ainsworth, Farley and Reps. Allen Treadaway, R-Morris, the committee chairman, Isaac Whorton, R-Valley and Tommy Hanes, R-Scottsboro.

Voting against it were Reps. Chris England, D-Tuscaloosa; Thomas Jackson, D-Thomasville; Mary Moore, D-Birmingham; and Harry Shiver, R-Stockton.

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