April 26, 2013

LePage signs bill shielding concealed-gun owners

By Michael Shepherd mshepherd@mainetoday.com
State House Bureau

AUGUSTA — Gov. Paul LePage signed an emergency bill Friday to shield identifying information on Maine concealed-handgun permits, according to a post on his Twitter account.

The bill, L.D. 345, sponsored by Rep. Corey Wilson, R-Augusta, finally passed the Senate and House on Thursday. The bill, which took effect after LePage's signature, makes the names, addresses and birth dates of permit holders confidential. It allows for aggregate statistical data on permit holders, such as gender and town of residence, to be released.

The bill gained momentum from Maine's gun-rights grassroots after a public records request to the state from the Bangor Daily News for information on all permits was condemned by Republican lawmakers, including Gov. LePage. After that, a temporary law was passed making identifying information on permits confidential until April's end. LePage's signature on Friday shielded it permanently.

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