CASPER, Wyo. — The Wyoming Legislature is in their third week of the 2020 budget session in Cheyenne.
Tuesday, Feb. 25 was the last day for legislation to be considered by either the Wyoming House of Representatives ‘Committee of the Whole’ or Senate ‘Committee of the Whole’ on first reading.
House Bill 78 was among those bills which had been accepted by the House for introduction and sent to the House Transportation Committee. However, the House did not consider the proposed bill on first reading ahead of the deadline Tuesday, meaning that the bill will not move forward during this legislative session.
The bill is known as the “Right to Keep and Bear Arms in Private Vehicles Act.” If it had become law, it would have prevented employers in Wyoming from putting in place policies which prohibit employees from storing and transporting firearms in their vehicles.
Firearm owners would be required to lock firearms out of sight in their vehicles or store firearms in locked containers attached to their vehicles.
Employers would be exempt from criminal or civil liability for any occurrence stemming from a firearm stored within an employee’s vehicle.
The University of Wyoming, community colleges and other schools would be exempt from the rules. Government agencies would be likewise exempt along with religious organizations.
During a budget session, at least two-thirds of the House must vote to have a proposed bill introduced. Those bills which meet this threshold are then assigned to a committee.
Committees which have been assigned bills after approval on an introductory vote in the House will vote to “pass,” “do not pass” or “pass with amendments.”
The bill was sponsored by Representatives Blake, Clem, Duncan, Harshman, Larsen, Lindholm and Olsen and Senators Driskill, Hicks and Nethercott.
When the House voted to send the bill to committee, which is the first step in the legislative process, the vote was 57-2. The introductory vote was as follows:
Ayes: BARLOW, BLACKBURN, BLAKE, BROWN, BURKHART, BURLINGAME, CLAUSEN, CLEM, CLIFFORD, CONNOLLY, DAYTON-SELMAN, DUNCAN, EDWARDS, EKLUND, EYRE, FLITNER, FREEMAN, FURPHY, GRAY, HALEY, HALLINAN, HENDERSON, HUNT, JENNINGS, KINNER, HARSHMAN, KIRKBRIDE, LARSEN LLOYD, LAURSEN DAN, LINDHOLM, LOUCKS, MACGUIRE, MILLER, NEWSOME, NICHOLAS, NORTHRUP, OBERMUELLER, OLSEN, PAXTON, PELKEY, PIIPARINEN, POWNALL, ROSCOE, SALAZAR, SIMPSON, SOMMERS, STITH, STYVAR, SWEENEY, TASS, WALTERS, WASHUT, WESTERN, WILSON, WINTER, YIN, ZWONITZERWyoming Legislative Service Office
Nays: CRANK, SCHWARTZ