National Parks Gun Law Takes Effect in February

June 25, 2009, 1:02 pm


A new law permitting concealed loaded firearms at National Parks will not take effect until February and the Interior Department will continue to enforce Reagan-era restrictions until then, a spokeswoman said today.

"Under the current regulation, firearms are generally prohibited, but citizens may transport unloaded and dismantled or cased firearms and carry firearms while participating in approved hunting programs and under certain other circumstances," Interior spokeswoman Kendra Barkoff said in a statement released minutes after President Obama signed the credit card holders' bill of rights, which includes an amendment allowing firearms at the nation's National Parks and wildlife refuges.

The department plans to work on implementing the new law in the meantime, focusing especially on public safety and the safety of National Park employees, Barkoff said. Permission to carry a firearm into a park and the actual restrictions on such possession will vary by state, since the new federal law is governed by each state's firearms laws.