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Virginia lawmakers approve bill sealing gun-permit database

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  1. Freedom of Information
Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine will soon have the option to sign legislation banning public disclosure of a state database of concealed handgun permit-holders.

Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine will soon have the option to sign legislation banning public disclosure of a state database of concealed handgun permit-holders.

With unanimous votes in both the state Senate yesterday and the House earlier this month, House Bill 2144 easily passed out of the Legislature. Statistical information on permit holders would still be available under the law and, according to the Associated Press, ‘[t]he public still could get information on concealed-carry permit holders at each Circuit Court, but would not have access to a statewide State Police database."

The wire service reported the bill was introduced last year after The Roanoke Times posted the state police database on its Web site, prompting at least one former state official to urge lawmakers to restrict the release of such information.

Similar efforts have cropped up around the country in recent years. Just this week, lawmakers in Tennessee are considering making it a crime to publish certain permit-registry data, the Chattanooga Times Free Press reports.