Florida Senate Passes Gun Safety Legislation

Mar 5, 2018

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The Florida Senate has passed a school safety bill putting new restrictions on rifle sales and allowing some teachers to carry guns. It's dubbed the "Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act."

The state Senate also voted to exclude some teachers from a controversial provision in its gun safety bill approved Monday. Before the change, the bill included a provision allowing all designated teachers to carry firearms on school grounds, if they are deputized and complete law enforcement training. But, Sen. Rene Garcia (R-Hialeah) says he wanted to strip that language out.

“The goal is to make sure that those instructional personnel that are in the classroom cannot participate in the program,” he said.

Still, Democrats argued it still could allow teachers who perform other duties, like coaching, and other school personnel to take part in the program.

Meanwhile, the Florida Senate also agreed to name the controversial program after a coach killed in last month’s mass school shooting in Parkland.

The former so-called “school marshal program” is now called the “Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program,” said Senate bill sponsor Bill Galvano.

“It’s named after Junior Varsity Coach Aaron Feis, who used his body to shield students from bullets and to save their lives, and in doing so, lost their own.”

Check out Tuesday's Capital Report for more on this story!