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Concealed weapons law affects McConnell members

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jonathan Mehringer
  • 22nd Security Forces Squadron
With the arrival of the New Year, Kansas enacted a new law becoming the 47th state to adopt a concealed-firearm carry policy.

In 2006, the Kansas Legislature passed the Personal & Family Protection Act. Better known as the Concealed Carry Bill, SB418, gives Kansas the right to join 46 other states in the nation to seek a permit to carry concealed weapons.

The Kansas Concealed Weapon Law, went into effect in Kansas, Jan. 1. The new provisions of the law authorize certain individuals 21 years and older, undergo a background investigation, and gun safety training to obtain permits to carry concealed weapons (defined as "handguns, pistols or revolvers").

Since July more than 4,800 Kansans have already applied to carry concealed weapons. Initial predictions expect as many as 20,000 to 40,000 Kansans will seek permits within the first four years alone.

Now you may be asking yourself does that mean firearms are allowed to be carried on McConnell Air Force Base?

The answer is simply no.

A vast majority of folks from the McConnell community may have already seen this sign which is posted at the installation entry gates. What you might not know is the meaning and intent behind it.

Although the concealed weapons law applies across Kansas it comes with some restrictions and guidelines. One is the law allows land owners to prohibit or restrict, in any manner, persons with a concealed firearms license from carrying a concealed firearm on your premises. Second, the law does not grant the individual to carry concealed in an area outside the control of the state - like the federal property of McConnell AFB.

Earlier this year, Attorney General Phill Kline approved a sign for establishments to post if they don't want concealed weapons on their premises. This sign is displayed at each base entry point. Further, chapter 12, MAFBI 31-101 outlines the guidelines for control of privately owned weapons on McConnell AFB. This instruction prohibits both military and civilian personnel from carrying privately owned firearms while on to the installation unless authorized by the installation commander. The only exclusion to this policy is for local, on-duty civilian law enforcement officers, in performance of official duties.

Military personnel who have already received or plan to apply for state issued concealed weapons permit must follow some further restrictions when carrying a concealed weapon. First, they must abide by all state/local laws and at no time, while off the installation will a military member in uniform be allowed to carry a concealed weapon regardless of their permit. Second, if on the installation, privately owned firearms must be transported in an unloaded configuration with the weapon and ammunition is separate compartments of the vehicle. Personnel transporting firearms in their vehicle will not leave the vehicle unattended under any circumstances. Lastly, if you violate this law off the installation, you could be charged with a Class A misdemeanor by local authorities. If you violate the law on McConnell AFB military members will be charged under the UCMJ and civilians will be prosecuted under United States Codes.

Please contact your local authorities or security forces at 759-3976 if you have any question or concerns dealing with control of privately owned or concealed weapons carry policy.

Important Concealed Weapons Points 

Official title of the law is Kansas Personal & Family Protection Act 
Permit requires training and background check 
Permits valid for four years 
Class A misdemeanor for violators

Military Restrictions on Concealed Weapons 

Off installation: 
Must abide by state law 
When in uniform may not carry concealed weapon (regardless of state law) 

On installation: 
May not carry concealed weapon 
When transporting firearms, must be unloaded and ammunitions placed in separate compartment of vehicle (e.g. weapon in trunk and ammunition in glove box) 

Storing weapons:
Base housing weapons must be registered within 72 hours 
Dorm/temp lodging weapons must be in 22nd SFS armory