Broward News

Legislators Trying for Gun Bans in Government Buildings and Daycare Before "Catastrophe"

There's currently a list in the Florida Statutes of 15 places where you can't bring a concealed weapon. A pair of state legislators would like to make that 17.

Last year, the legislature passed a law that would impose fines on counties and municipalities that tried to write up their own gun laws.

Officials in Palm Beach County and West Palm Beach governments have been freaking out over it -- one saying a "catastrophe" could take place -- and they've been taking all sorts of exotic measures to combat the law.

Now, State Rep. Lori Berman, a Delray Beach Democrat, has filed legislation to add government buildings and childcare facilities to the list of places you can't bring a concealed weapon, saying it's in the interest of "public safety."

"I am deeply concerned that citizens can carry guns into childcare facilities and governmental buildings," Berman says. "I urge the Legislature to support this bill to protect our children and our fellow citizens. We cannot wait for a catastrophe -- we must address the flaws in our laws now."

Palm Beach County employees have gotten on Berman's good side to file this one, with two specifically commenting on why they don't want guns at their offices.

Commissioner Burt Aaronson says they "owe this to the general public who place their trust in government," while another county employee thinks people might rob her office if they're allowed to have guns in there.

"...[W]e handle a substantial amount of cash daily," Palm Beach County Tax Collector Anne Gannon says. "The temptation of quick cash and immediate access to guns is a hazardous risk to the safety of the public and my employees."

Sen. Maria Sachs, also a Delray Beach Democrat, will be sponsoring the Senate side of the bill.

Click here for the bill text.

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Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley