May 23, 2018
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Concealed weapons in Acadia OK’d

BDN staff and wire reports

AUGUSTA, Maine — A bill restricting guns at Acadia National Park moved a step closer to final passage Monday as the House routinely approved a measure that changes the previous no-gun policy by allowing a few exceptions — including an exception for concealed weapons.

The Maine House of Representatives went along with the Senate and approved legislation that overrides a new federal law that took effect Feb. 22. Reversing policy, the federal law permits guns in nearly all of the National Park Service’s 392 locations, unless states impose other restrictions.

In Maine, Sen. Dennis Damon, D-Trenton, introduced a bill to keep intact the national park gun ban with exceptions for police or if the gun is disassembled or packed away so it can’t be readily used.

As it worked its way through the Legislature, Damon’s bill was amended to also allow exceptions for retired police and those who have concealed weapons permits.

His bill appeared to be on its way toward final House and Senate approval after passing without debate Monday in the House.

Maine would be among the first states to override the federal law if LD 1737 becomes law. Acadia drew 2.2 million visitors in 2009, making it the 10th-most-visited in the national system.

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