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Proposed Indiana bill will allow tax breaks for taking a gun safety class

Photo Supplied / Indiana Statehouse

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WOWO) – A state representative from Fort Wayne has co-authored a bill allowing Hoosiers to get tax breaks for taking a firearms safety classes or purchasing a gun safe. Another representative proposed a bill requiring teachers to complete a firearms class to legally possess a gun on school property, according to the Journal Gazette.

Around two dozen gun bills have been filed in the state legislature this year.  A lot of the bills have Democratic support however, they done have much of a chance in chambers that are controlled by Republican supermajorities.

Republican lawmakers have submitted bills that will eliminate gun licensing fees and allow Hoosiers to take their guns to church even though some churches are attached to schools.

The house bill allowing tax credits has been assigned to the House Ways and Means Committee because it effects the state revenue.  Hoosiers can see a maximum credit of $200 for a single tax return and $400 for a joint return.  State officials are unsure of how much the tax credit will cost the state as they do not know how many Hoosiers will take advantage of it.

Representative Ben Smaltz, a Republican from Auburn believes his tax credit is great because it encourages responsible gun ownership.  Smaltz states “If you would like to have someone do something then reward them for doing it,” he said. “Don’t mandate it.”

The bill that offers teacher training was submitted by Representative Chris Judy of Fort Wayne. The bill would require someone to be certified by an accredited association or group that has been approved by the school safety board. They also need to be authorized by the school board to legally possess a firearm in or on school property.

Indiana law currently states that the schools have the decision on whether their teachers are allowed to bring a gun onto school property.  The first known school district to install gun safes on school property is Jay County School Corporation.  The district allows certain staff members to retrieve guns from the safes and use deadly force should an attack occur.

Judy said his bill is one part of an effort by the Indiana state legislature to focus on school safety. Other efforts also include providing additional state funding to harden schools, mandating school shooter drills and helping students with mental illness.

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