CARRBORO – Carrboro local leaders and residents are taking steps to counteract the state’s new regulations allowing people with permits to carry concealed handguns where alcohol is served. As part of the new legislation, guns would also be allowed on playgrounds, greenways, and other public recreation areas.
If a business owner posts a sign forbidding concealed weapons, and a person violates that, it’s a class-one misdemeanor.
“Even accidentally causing harm to a patron in your business, it just makes the most basic common sense to me that you wouldn’t want someone carrying a weapon in your establishment,” said Mickey Maloney, co-owner of the Carrboro wine bar, Glasshalffull.
Annette Stone, Carrboro’s Community and Economic Development Director, said that so far, about 35 signs have been printed for businesses to use, stating that concealed weapons are forbidden within their establishments.
“Terry Buckner has been very kind to step up and say she would help with the distribution of letters and the town-purchased the signs, so that is the way we are going about it,” Stone said.
At a recent Carrboro Board of Aldermen meeting, members, including Damon Seils, voiced their approval of the initiative.
Maloney said whether he decides to use his own sign or one provided by the Town, he said it is a good idea not to mix alcohol and weapons.
“As far as I’m concerned, we will definitely put some sort of notification on the door of our business that we request people not bring any sort of weapon into our establishment,” Maloney said.
Attorney Michael Brough explained to the Board of Aldermen last week the impact that the state’s new regulations would have on Town laws.
“They removed the authority to prevent the carrying of concealed handguns on designated playgrounds. I can’t quite figure that one out, but that is what they’ve done,” Brough said.
Under the new legislation, the Town’s authority to prohibit the carrying of concealed handguns on designated playgrounds was rescinded.
In addition, the Town can still prohibit the carrying of concealed handguns on designated athletic fields, but only during scheduled, organized athletic events.
“They have to be specifically spelled out as they are in the ordinance to be adopted, but only in scheduled, organized events. So if it’s just an ad hoc gathering of soccer players, you can’t prohibit it,” Brough said. “How you go about enforcing it, I have no idea, so I don’t know what the point of that is.”
The measure will also allow concealed-carry permit holders to store weapons in locked cars on the campus of any public school or university.
It is illegal to consume alcohol when carrying a firearm, and a person must be 21 to buy a gun in North Carolina.