Michigan Senate panel approves concealed guns in schools, 'gun-free' zones

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — People with concealed-carry permits could carry guns inside schools and other “pistol-free” areas under legislation advancing in Michigan’s Legislature.

The bill was approved 4-1 Tuesday by the Republican-led Senate Judiciary Committee. It would prohibit people with concealed-carry licenses from openly carrying their guns in schools and other “gun-free” zones — which they currently can do under Michigan law.

Recent incidents at schools have prompted calls to end what critics say is a legal loophole.

Supporters say concealed weapon permit holders could prevent mass shootings like the recent attack at an Oregon community college. Opponents, including many school superintendents, say the bill would make schools less safe.

In 2012, Republican Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed similar legislation days after because there was no provision for local schools districts to opt out.

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