The Iowa House of Representatives passed HF 517, an omnibus gun bill, 58 to 39 on Tuesday afternoon. The bill passed out of the House Judiciary Committee before the funnel deadline.

The bill that was floor managed by State Representative Matt Windschitl (R-Missouri Valley) essentially had several pro-gun rights measures, including Stand Your Ground language packed into one bill, making it the largest gun bill in state history.

HF 517 if passed into law:

  • Legalizes short-barrel rifles and short-barrel shotguns provided those in possession have the appropriate paperwork from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
  • Fixes the “armed with intent” language. Currently under Iowa law if you are charged with a crime while carrying county attorneys can add an additional “Going Armed with Intent” charge even if your alleged crime has nothing to do with the you being armed. Being armed does not mean you intend to hurt anyone.
  • Makes the hunter’s safety course a valid permit to carry training.
  • Requires uniform permits statewide (eliminating county by county permit variations).
  • Makes permits to acquire valid for five years from one year.
  • It repeals the current ban on supervised youth handgun shooting.
  • It protects the privacy of carry permit holders, it prohibits the public release of any personally identifiable information of carry permit holders.
  • It prohibits any political subdivision (city, county, or township) from creating gun free zones that violate state preemption law.
  • It establishes “loser pays” so that if someone sues over the creation of a gun free zone the loser of that lawsuit must pay the winner’s court costs.
  • Prohibits the confiscation firearms during a declared state of emergency.
  • Legalizes stand your ground by removing the “duty to retreat” requirement in Iowa law. It establishes that as long as someone has a reasonable basis for the belief that they are in danger they may defend themselves or those around them.
  • Removes the requirement of a so-called “retention holster” while operating an ATV or snowmobile.

The Constitutional Carry provision that was originally in the bill was removed by amendment while being debated in committee.

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