Associated Press Published

Lawmakers Debating Increased Security at Capitol


West Virginians can carry firearms to many city swimming pools, tennis courts and afterschool centers under protections approved by state lawmakers and the governor in 2014. Now lawmakers in this gun-friendly state are debating whether to strengthen security at the Capitol.

After last year’s decision eliminating gun bans at city centers hosting afterschool activities, state officials are now considering metal detectors or other security measures in West Virginia’s Capitol.

Republican Senate President Bill Cole says it is ridiculous that Capitol security is weaker than in surrounding state buildings. Guns are still illegal on the Capitol complex, except for concealed carry permit holders who leave guns locked in their cars.

Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin says he’s leaning toward favoring added security.