Missouri Rep. Rocky Miller (R-124), who represents Camden and Miller counties, pre-filed three bills related to the liability of churches for allowing parishioners to carry firearms, abortion notification procedures, and protections for Native American artifacts
Friday kicked off the opening of the Missouri General Assembly’s pre-filing period for legislative bills to be considered when the session opens on Jan. 3 and one Lake area representative has already filed three.
Missouri House of Representatives member Rocky Miller (R-124), who represents Camden and Miller counties, pre-filed three bills related to the liability of churches for allowing parishioners to carry firearms, abortion notification procedures, and protections for Native American artifacts, according to his recent Capital Connections column addressing the topics.
Although the Missouri Constitution allows for bills to be pre-filed, the legislative items won’t actually be introduced until the first day of the regular session. Delegates have until through the 60th day of the session to introduce bills, however, no consideration of bills will be heard after 6:00 p.m. on the first Friday following the second Monday in May with the session wrapping up later that month.
“The three bills I filed today are varied, but all are important to me and our community and I look forward to seeing them through the process this legislative session,” Rep. Miller said.
Here are a list of the three bills and what they would do, according to Rep. Miller.
House Bill 1382
Eliminates the requirement that concealed carry permit holders get permission from the minister or persons representing such religious organization in order to carry concealed firearms in churches or places of worship.
“Some church leaders have approached me and asked for legislation help in protection their flock. The realist in me always realized that we probable need to be aware of our surroundings at all times, but I hoped that I could relax a little at church. No more,” Rep. Miller wrote. “Currently, they may allow people to carry within their church, but unfortunately, they are liable for the actions of those that want to defend themselves, family and others.”
Miller said the bill would remove the church’s liability, which carries high insurance rates, but would still allow them to post “no weapons” signs preventing parishioners from carrying firearms within the building.
“Unfortunately I do not have this level of faith that I want to be in an area that declares itself a target. It is a sad state of affairs that it has come to this, but this is the reality we live in, no place is safe,” Rep. Miller wrote.
House Bill 1383
Changes the laws regarding consent for a minor to obtain an abortion.
“I have filed this bill every year I have been in office and will continue to file it until it gets passed and signed by the Governor,” Rep. Miller said. “Currently in Missouri, it only takes one parent of a minor child to get the surgery known as an abortion, this bill would require that the other custodial parent needs to be notified in writing prior to the procedure as long as the other parent is in good standing and poses no threat to the other parent or minor.”
According to Rep. Miller, this bill will not require permission of the other parent, only the notification, and is meant to start a discussion and not create a dangerous situation.
“It also may keep physical or sexual abusers from keeping their crimes secret from the other parent by not even notifying this minors lifeline to get away from this person,” Rep. Miller wrote. “It is shocking to me that some people are so set to take a life that they are willing to keep it a secret so the minor does not have the opportunity to change their mind, save themselves or at least be more informed of their decision.”
House Bill 1384
Changes the laws regarding the selling of authentic American Indian arts or crafts.
Another bill that Miller has filed in past years, the Native American Arts and Crafts Protection act would ensure a person or business is of American Indian descent to profit on sales of those items.
“This bill ensures that you must actually be an American Indian to profit on your sales of arts and crafts. Unfortunately, there are people who try to make a profit on their products, selling them with an American Indian designation. False claims damage our heritage and lessens it when people are dishonest and seek to profit on a false claim,” Rep. Miller said. “If you have been told that you are an American Indian or even if you identify with our people, that is fantastic, just don’t try to gain monetarily and say your work is produced by a Native American.”
In addition, Rep. Miller plans to file several utility-based bills early during the pre-filing session.