SALEM, Ore. — A bill requiring secure gun storage and allowing for restrictions on concealed carry passed the Oregon Senate in a concurrence vote on Wednesday, ensuring that it will go to Governor Kate Brown's desk for signing into law.
Senate Bill 554 passed the Oregon House at the end of April, and previously passed in the Senate. Wednesday's vote approved modifications to the original bill which added the gun storage requirements.
“Gun violence is a public health crisis. We’ve lost far too many loved ones to shootings and today we took a meaningful step toward preventing these unspeakable tragedies,” said Senator Ginny Burdick, who introduced the bill.
One aspect of the bill requires that guns be stored either with a cable lock, in a locked storage container, or in a gun safe. Failure to do so could result in a $500 fine, and the fine increases to $2,000 if the gun ends up in the hands of a minor. Guns would have to be likewise secured when transferred.
The bill would also require that the owner of a lost or stolen gun report it within 72 hours from when they "reasonably should have known" it was missing, House Democrats said last week.
“Suicides are increasing. Gun violence is increasing. A firearm that is not safely stored is a threat,” Senator Burdick continued. “Whether someone steals that firearm to do harm to another person, or a child is killed because they mistake a weapon for a toy, or someone in an acute mental health crisis accesses a gun – it’s a tragedy, and we can help prevent these tragedies. By passing Senate Bill 554 today, we help prevent these tragedies.”
SB 554 would also allow local jurisdictions and organizations that govern public spaces — such as colleges, school districts, and airports — to ban licensed concealed carry as part of a designated gun-free zone. It would remove the "affirmative defense" for people carrying a concealed weapon within a posted zone.
The bill passed in a 17-7 vote and awaits Governor Brown's signature. If signed, it will take effect on the 91st day after the legislature adjourns.