By NEMS Daily Journal
JACKSON – The Mississippi House has sent a bill to the governor’s desk to block public access to information about state-issued permits for people to carry concealed weapons.
The move came Thursday even as controversy intensified over the Department of Public Safety’s apparent decision to delay pending requests for the records until the bill was pushed into law.
The bill, supported by the National Rifle Association, has been backed by lawmakers upset that a newspaper in New York published the names and addresses of people who have concealed weapons permits. Supporters say allowing open records violates gun owners’ privacy.
A reporter for the Daily Journal has requested the records, as has James Hendrix, who runs the Jackson Jambalaya blog. Neither has yet received a copy of the records.
Daily Journal Executive Editor Lloyd Gray said the paper has no intention of publishing names or addresses of gun permit holders but sought the records to assist in its reporting of gun trends in the region.
The Journal made a similar request in 2006 and received the records, never publishing the names.