Senate Committee rejects gun rights expansion resolution

South Dakota legislators rejected a ballot measure this morning that would have expanded gun rights in the state.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 7 to 0 to send SJR506 to the 41st legislative day, killing the measure.

Republican Sen. Julie Frye-Mueller from Rapid City sponsored the resolution.

The measure would have limited when guns could be taken from people charged with felonies or in domestic abuse situations.

It would also have removed sales taxes on firearms, ammunition, reloading supplies, and “accessories.”

Proponents said it would strengthen and guarantee South Dakotans’ gun rights and send a message to firearm manufacturers that the state was an excellent place to do business.

Opponents expressed concerns that the measure, if passed, would have stopped business owners from preventing employees or customers from bringing a weapon into their establishment.

They also expressed concerns about removing the tax on firearms and ammunition. One legislator said they just rejected a resolution eliminating the sales tax on food.

Other opponents said the measure would make it challenging to remove weapons from people charged with felonies or domestic violence.

Sending bills to the 41st day is the legislature’s way of defeating bills. There is no 41st day in a legislative session.