CHARLESTON,WV (AP)-The West Virginia House voted Wednesday evening to allow people with concealed weapons permits to carry guns on college campuses.
The GOP-led chamber approved the measure 59-41, after more than three hours of debate that touched on The Bill of Rights, the frontal lobe of the brain and the #MeToo movement.
The bill carves out exemptions that allow for universities to ban firearms from stadiums with more than 1,000 seats, campus daycare centers and college law enforcement buildings.
WVU leaders oppose the bill and students there have protested the measure. Marshall University also is against it. Professors and school staffers have flooded the Capitol to lobby against the bill.
At a public hearing earlier this month, Concord University Police Officer David Eldridge said his department would have to hire 13 additional officers and purchase multiple metal detectors if the bill became law. It would cost the department $726,000 in the first year.
Ten other states allow for concealed carrying on college campuses, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
The bill will now head to the Senate.