Gov Murphy Signs New Conceal Carry Laws in NJ
In response to the US Supreme Court’s ruling in the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen – a landmark second amendment decision from this year – New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed bill A4769/S3214, strengthening restrictions for who is eligible for a public concealed carry permit, and establishing a list of place where people with permits cannot carry their weapons.
In June of this year, the US Supreme Court ruled in the NY State Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen case that it impermissible (“too bad to be allowed”) to require concealed carry applicants in New York to show “proper cause” to carry a handgun in public, which in effect invalidated New Jersey’s longstanding laws restricting public carry to those who could demonstrate a “justifiable need.”
Less than 24 hours later, Governor Murphy signed an Executive Order naming “sensitive places” where concealed carry is unlawful in New Jersey, regardless of permit status.
“Today’s bill signing is the culmination of months of negotiations between this Administration and our partners in the Legislature, delivering on the promise I made this summer to keep New Jersey safe in the aftermath of the Supreme Court's awful decision,” said Governor Murphy. “While I strongly disagree with that decision, we must abide by it, and today's law fully respects the Second Amendment while keeping guns out of the wrong hands and preventing them from proliferating in our communities. I am proud to sign this commonsense legislation which prohibits carrying guns in sensitive places, including our daycares, hospitals, libraries, and stadiums.”
Under the law signed yesterday (Dec. 22, 2022), no one is permitted to carry a firearm in the following locations/categories of places (full list included in the new law):
- Entertainment venues, including stadiums, arenas, amusement parks, casinos, racetracks, and publicly owned libraries and museum
- Youth sporting events and other recreational facilities, such as public parks, beaches, and playground
- Bars, restaurants where alcohol is served, and any other locations that serve alcohol for on-premises consumption
- Airports and public transportation hubs
Locations with vulnerable populations
- Schools, colleges, and universities
- Daycare and child-care facilities
- Hospitals and healthcare facilities
- Long-term care facilities and nursing homes
- Correctional facilities, juvenile justice facilities, and halfway houses
- Homeless shelters
Locations with governmental and First Amendment activity
- Polling places
- Law enforcement stations and offices
- Government buildings and locations with government meetings
- Demonstrations, protests, and licensed public gatherings
In addition to these three categories, the new law sets a default rule that firearms cannot be carried on private property, including homes, businesses, stores, and houses of worship, unless the property owner gives permission. The only exceptions to these rules are for law enforcement officers or private security guards.
“New Jersey continues to lead the nation in combatting gun violence and demonstrating how commonsense gun laws help keep residents and law enforcement safe,” said Attorney General Platkin. “The legislation signed into law today, strengthens our efforts to keep communities safe by keeping firearms out of the wrong hands and away from sensitive locations, such as where children learn and play. I thank Governor Murphy for taking another strong step forward for gun safety in the wake of recent mass shootings across the country and gun violence here at home. We remain steadfast in protecting New Jerseyans from the epidemic of gun violence while respecting Second Amendment rights.”
In addition to the expanded list of “sensitive places,” the new law expands ineligibility for a concealed carry permit to the following groups: (No guns for these people)
- Persons with an outstanding arrest warrant for an indictable offense
- Persons subject to certain restraining orders, including persons who have violated either a temporary or a final restraining order
- Persons subject to restraining orders in other jurisdictions
- Persons subject to voluntary admissions to mental institutions or hospitals
The new law also makes for a more vigorous carry permit application process. Applicants must now include four endorsements of character from non-related persons. Upon submission of their application, applicants and their endorsers must now be interviewed by law enforcement to determine whether the applicant I likely to engage in conduct that would “result in harm to themselves or others.”
New Jersey has now become the first state in the nation to require all gun permit carriers to maintain and provide proof of liability insurance with coverage for at least $300k on account of injury, death, or damage to property arising out of the ownership of a firearm.
Finally, the new law also increases the handgun permit application fee to $25 from the $2 mark, where it had sat since 1966.
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