ATLANTA — Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal vetoed legislation Tuesday that would have allowed concealed weapons on college campuses.
House Bill 859 would have allowed anyone with a weapons license who is 21 years or older to carry guns on college grounds, with the exception of dormitories, fraternity and sorority houses and athletic events. The bill would have also mandated that guns must be concealed and only those who hold a permit would be allowed to carry.
“From the early days of our nation and state, colleges have been treated as sanctuaries of learning where firearms have not been allowed,” Deal wrote in a press release. “To depart from such time honored protections should require overwhelming justification. I do not find that such justification exists.”
Deal instead issued an executive order directed toward the commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia and the chancellor of the University System of Georgia requesting that they submit a report by Aug. 1 detailing the “security measures that each college within their respective systems has in place.”
Deal vetoed 15 other bills during the legislative session, including HB 757 which would have protected religious officials from being “required to perform marriage ceremonies in violation of their legal right,” according to the release.