MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. (WAFF) - You can now carry weapons into several Morgan County buildings again. A vote from the county commission two weeks ago briefly required county senior centers and a dozen other buildings to be gun-free. This week, the commission unanimously voted to reverse course.
At its regular meeting June 11, the commission banned guns at 13 buildings annexed throughout the county.
Commission Chairman Ray Long sourced pressure from county workers, senior citizens and social media for the about-face from this team.
“We even had our own people calling and saying, 'What am I going to do? Because I’m not going to the senior center without my gun," said Long.
“We made a mistake. We’re certainly not too big to admit it and correct it.”
Several gun rights advocacy group members questioned the initial decision two weeks ago.
“What were the ramifications when you voted for this," questioned one advocate.
Long responded by saying county workers were concerned for their safety.
“They weren’t just scared to come to work but they felt uncomfortable when somebody comes in with a weapon," said Long.
“We’re not here to harm you or cause a fuss or anything like that. Sheriff Ron knows us and knows that’s not what we’re about. We’re just kind of watching out for our constitutional rights," said the regional leader for the Alabama chapter of Son’s of Liberty Riders.
Long suggested people on social media will be upset with the commission regardless. “They’ll be mad they don’t have anything to blame us for now,” said Long. “Nobody here is anti-Second Amendment or anti-guns.”
“When we mess up, we need to be told we did,” he said. “Today we backed up and corrected a mistake. If you can get Nancy Pelosi (U.S. House Speaker) or somebody like that, I’d like to see that.”
The 13 courthouse annexes were the Morgan County Engineering Department; Parks and Recreation, Archives; Animal Control; Environmental Services; district 1, 2 and 3 shops; and senior centers in Falkville, Neel, Union Hill, Lacey’s Spring and Somerville.
All 13 now allow guns on property and inside the building.