Will County concealed carry proponents criticize Quinn

Will County concealed carry proponents criticize Quinn

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JOLIET, Ill. (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

Will County Board member Don Moran, who is president of the Illinois Rifle Association, said Wednesday that Gov. Pat Quinn's amendatory veto to the state's concealed carry legislation would be too restrictive.

The Legislature is expected to override the governor's changes early next week. That would be the right thing to do, said Moran, D-Romeoville.

"I don't think the governor's amendatory veto is going to go anywhere," Moran said. "I guess we'll see on Tuesday."

Quinn's amendatory veto, which gave him the power to change the original bill rather than reject it outright, would ban the concealed carry of firearms in any establishment that serves alcohol.

"What's the point?" Moran asked. "If I go out to dinner in a restaurant with my family, and I'm not drinking, what is the point of banning me from carrying in a firearm to defend myself and my family?"

Fellow Will County Board member Steve Balich, R-Homer Glen, who also is an outspoken proponent of concealed carry, agreed with Moran.

"If I go out to dinner with my girlfriend and I'm sitting there and I can't carry a gun with me and some guy comes in and starts shooting, I might be killed, she might be killed," he said. "The guy next to me might be killed."

Moran didn't like that Quinn limited concealed carry permit holders to one 10-round magazine and one gun. He said Quinn's security personnel carry more than that to protect him.

"His life is no more important than mine and my family's," Moran said.

Moran opposes Quinn's call for requiring that all weapons be completely concealed.

Moran and Balich made their comments after a Will County Forest Preserve Board committee meeting where the concealed carry law was addressed. (County board members double as forest preserve board members).

During the meeting, Executive Director Marcy DeMauro said currently, guns are banned in all forest preserves. When the concealed carry law goes into effect the district may have to add some ordinances to limit weapons. For instance, guns could be banned in district buildings and playgrounds and at public programs, special events and all events that require permits, including charity events, picnics and camping, DeMauro said.

"We would make it illegal to fire a weapon in, on or across a forest preserve for any reason other than the defense of human life," she added.

That would prohibit any target practice or the shooting of animals or causing random damage to district property, DeMauro said. State statute gives the district the power to create such ordinances with board approval, she said.

DeMauro and committee members agreed that the district should delay any ordinance changes until the dust settles in Springfield.

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