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State House Panel Votes to Arm One Person Per School


A House panel voted Wednesday to let schools designate one employee at each site to be able to have access to a gun. Arizona Public Radio’s Howard Fischer explains.

Attorney General Tom Horne told members of the House Appropriations Committee he became worried about school safety in the wake of the 2012 shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School that claimed 26 lives. Horne said letting all teachers arm themselves made no sense. But, with the state unable to afford police officers in every school, Horne said doing nothing also is not an option.

“If some maniac gets into a school and there’s no one there with a gun, he can do a lot of damage. In fact, in the Sandy Hook case, the principal tried to stop him with her bare hands and he killed her. If she had a gun it might have been a different story,” Horne said.

The designated person would have to undergo a background check and training. And, the person could not carry it around but would have to keep it locked up. But, Rep. Stefanie Mach said one concern is how having people with guns in schools will affect the cost of liability insurance.

“The bigger concern I have, truly, is really an unassailable truth that more weapons equal more violence. It’s simple,” Mach said.

The committee vote sends the measure to the full House.

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