Board to revisit concealed carry

Published 11:44 pm Sunday, January 3, 2016

Beaufort County commissioners will again address the issue of allowing concealed firearms into county buildings at Monday night’s meeting.

During December’s regularly scheduled Board of Commissioners meeting, commissioners voted 5-2 against allowing gun owners with concealed-carry permits to bring weapons into any county building excepting schools, detention centers and any place occupied by state or federal employees, including courthouses.

Commissioners Hood Richardson and Frankie Waters voted to repeal the county’s concealed-carry ordinance, however, Commissioner Gary Brinn requested that the issue be revisited, putting forward a resolution similar to the one Richardson presented previously. The resolution would allow concealed-carry permit holders to carry firearms in any county building, barring schools, the Beaufort County Courthouse and the Beaufort County Detention Center.

Discussion during the December meeting centered around two county buildings that could pose particular problems: the county tax office and Department of Social Services. At the time, Board Chairman Jerry Langley pointed out that allowing concealed weapons into those buildings could create stressful working conditions for some county employees.

Also on Monday’s agenda, votes by the Board will appoint new Chief Financial Officer Anita Radcliffe and could officially start phase II of a joint county and North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission project at Wright’s Creek, near Belhaven. The county approved a $200,000 expenditure in September, matching CAMA grant funds, to purchase the land that will eventually provide public access to the water with boat ramps and fishing areas.

County EMS Director John Flemming will return to Monday’s meeting with a report of non-emergency medical transport companies and how many transports those companies provide per year in the county. Flemming was directed to do so at the Board’s last meeting, in which commissioners considered granting a seventh non-emergency medical transport franchise. Six companies are currently operating in the county.

The Beaufort County Board of Commissioners meets at 5:30 p.m. Monday in the County Administrative Office, 121 W. Third St., Washington. The meeting is open to the public.