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Business owners split on new gun law | News

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Business owners split on new gun law

What some once called the "guns everywhere" law is causing controversy among business owners.

House Bill 60, which passed on the last day of the Georgia General Assembly, allows Georgians with carry permits to have guns. Everywhere from some public buildings to bars and that's causing mixed reactions from the people who own those businesses.

"I don't have a problem with people that have had a background check bringing an open weapon into the Rigby's Entertainment Complex," owner Steve Rigby said.

Steve Rigby says nothing will keep someone who wants to do harm from coming in to his business, so the best strategy to keep his customers safe is if they have guns of their own.

"God forbid a tragedy were to happen at a place like this and no one was here to protect them," he said.

But at another family fun center in Macon, the owner feels just the opposite.

"This whole idea of arming people to protect other people is the Wild Wild West."

Rene Neville says when he first bought Olympia Family Fun Center in 2006, violence was a problem and that by not allowing guns into his business, that problem has gone away.

"I run an establishment that entertains families that have a lot of children. Subsequently, I don't want people coming in here with armed weapons unless they're under some type of law enforcement," Neville said.

And Neville is not alone. At the Hummingbird Bar in downtown Macon, owner Victor Stanley isn't a fan of the new law either.

It's why he posted a sign outside of his business to send a clear signal weapons aren't welcome and neither is the new law dubbed by critics "guns everywhere."

"We expect customers to abide by it, but they're not going to and I hope we're prepared for that. I think it's a bad idea," Stanley said.

Businesses and churches have the option of opting out of the law.

Another provision law enforcement have to have probable cause to detain a person and ask if they have a license to carry.

The law defines what kind of behaviors make up probable cause.


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