Friday, December 20, 2013

MCC targets concealed-carry of firearms

There was a vigorous discussion of a proposed concealed-carry policy at last night's Board of Trustees meeting at McHenry County College.

I read a statement during the public comment period, asking the Trustees to allow off-duty law enforcement officers to carry their firearms on campus and also not to declare Parking Areas A and B as gun-free zones.

Then I waited around for Item 15 to come up. I want to thank Trustee and Chairman Parrish for calling Item 15 before the break he wanted, rather than after. Thank you!

The proposed policy got additional nit-picking during the discussion, and the Board appears headed toward designating Parking Areas A and B, those nearest the childcare center, as areas when vehicles containing firearms cannot be parked.

Today I re-read Public Act 098-0063, and I believe that the College cannot so designate Lots A and B. At last night's meeting a sub-section was read that allows a public community college to develop "resolutions, regulations, or policies regarding the storage or maintenance of firearms, which must include designated areas where persons can park vehicles that contain firearms."

After dissecting this sub-section, I believe that, since MCC will not be developing resolutions, regulations, or policies regarding the storage or maintenance of firearms, it cannot designate certain parking areas for vehicles containing firearms.

Every word in a statute is important, and the location of every word is important. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

And one more re-reading clarified that it is not necessary to unload a firearm and place it in the trunk of a locked vehicle, after driving into one of MCC's parking lots. The firearm, even loaded, can be placed in the glove compartment or console. Or it can be placed in the trunk, which itself is defined as a "case".

The Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Ron Parrish, invited comments from the public on this proposed Policy. You can email them to or you can send them to him at  He will distribute them to all trustees, unless you indicate that your email is to him (only).

At this point I would guess that Trustees Parrish, Wilbeck, Jenner and Liddell will vote against the proposed policy. That leaves Trustees Kisser, Miller, Walsh and (Student Trustee) Diversiev, whom I think will vote for it. In a tie, I believe it will fail. MCC President Vicky Smith is, in my opinion, firmly in favor of a policy and one as restrictive as possible.

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