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New legislation that sparked debate over allowing adults to carry firearms on school properties

COLUMBUS — If a bill at the Ohio Statehouse becomes law, Ohio could soon allow adults to carry guns in schools with just two hours of hands-on training.

Right now, the state law requires more than 700 hours.

Lawmakers introduced House Bill 99 more than a year ago. Late last year, it passed the Ohio House and was introduced to the Ohio Senate. The second hearing was held today, and it had the option to be voted to the full Senate.

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Right now, for staff members to carry a gun they need more than 700 hours of peace officer training. State Rep. Thomas Hall is the sponsor of the bill and said, “750-plus hours is not a realistic or practical requirement for full time staff to complete in order to simply keep our students and educators safe.”

There is plenty of opposition for the bill, including the Ohio Federation of Teachers. Vice President Shari Obrenski testified Tuesday that the current standards are more appropriate for the serious nature of carrying a gun.

“We do not support arming teachers or staff. Fully and fairly funding our public schools would allow more school districts to hire appropriately trained School Resource Officers, without watering down the current law,” Obrenski said.

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The new bill would allow any adult in a school to carry a firearm after completing 20 yours of training and additional two hours of hands-on training with a gun.

Permit less carry in the state of Ohio goes into effect on June 13.

The bill allows each district to make its own decisions on whether to allow the adults to carry or not and they must communicate with the public in the same manner they would normally use for communications.