On Friday, Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam signed a revised version of HB 995, also known as the “guns in parks” bill. The legislation, which went into effect immediately, allows handgun permit holders to carry in all park areas that are not on school property or within the vicinity of school-sanctioned events.
While previous versions of the bill would have allowed carry in the capitol complex and banned toy guns within 150 feet of schools, Haslam reportedly found the most recent version to be a good compromise, calling it a “vast improvement from the bill as initially introduced.”
National parks have allowed carry with permits since February 2010, so this legislation, which prohibits municipalities from making their own rules regarding park carry, further simplifies the complex patchwork of laws faced by gun owners unwilling to give up their right to self-defense while enjoying sometimes-remote outdoor recreation areas.