On Monday, December 19, 2016, Governor John Kasich signed Ohio Senate Bill 199 into law, which allows concealed carry permit holders to store their firearms in their vehicles while parked in their employers’ parking lots while at work. Additionally, the new law incorporates key pieces of House Bill 48, which expands the types of locations where permit holders can carry their weapons, including daycare centers and college and university campuses, but only if the permit holders have been authorized to do so by the applicable organization.
Senate Bill 199 originally included concealed carry permit holders as a protected class under the Ohio Civil Rights Act – the same law that provides protection against discrimination in employment on the basis of race, gender, age, and religion. However, the Bill that was passed by the Ohio legislature removed this provision, following the receipt of arguments from business groups claiming that it would infringe on employers’ rights.
The new law takes effect 90 days after Governor Kasich’s signature. At that time, Ohio employers will be prohibited from barring concealed carry permit holders from storing their weapons in cars parked on company property, including company parking lots. Employers throughout the state will need to revisit and potentially revise applicable policies on employees’ rights to bring firearms on company property.