New Jersey Governor Signs Massive Legislation to Restrict Carry Rights

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed a massive bill last week that will restrict one’s right to bear arms outside the home and add more red tape to the concealed carry application process.

“Today’s bill signing is the culmination of months of negotiations between this Administration and our partners in the Legislature, delivering on the promise I made this summer to keep New Jersey safe in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s awful decision,” said Governor Murphy in a press release obtained by GunsAmerica.

Murphy is referencing the high court’s landmark Bruen decision that invalidated “may-issue” concealed carry standards around the country.

Prior to the ruling, New Jersey citizens would only be issued a carry permit if they could demonstrate a “justifiable need” to the government.

SEE ALSO: WATCH: Naked New Jersey Businessman Chases Car Thieves with AR-15, Police Take His Guns

“While I strongly disagree with that decision, we must abide by it, and today’s law fully respects the Second Amendment while keeping guns out of the wrong hands and preventing them from proliferating in our communities,” continued Murphy. “I am proud to sign this commonsense legislation which prohibits carrying guns in sensitive places, including our daycares, hospitals, libraries, and stadiums.”

Sensitive places, aka gun-free zones, are defined per the bill by these three categories:

High-density locations

  • Entertainment venues, including stadiums, arenas, amusement parks, casinos, racetracks, and publicly owned libraries and museum
  • Youth sporting events and other recreational facilities, such as public parks, beaches, and playground
  • Bars, restaurants where alcohol is served, and any other locations that serve alcohol for on-premises consumption
  • Airports and public transportation hubs

Locations with vulnerable populations

  • Schools, colleges, and universities
  • Daycare and child-care facilities
  • Hospitals and health care facilities
  • Long-term care facilities and nursing homes
  • Correctional facilities, juvenile justice facilities, and halfway houses
  • Homeless shelters

Locations with governmental and First Amendment activity

  • Polling places
  • Courthouses
  • Law enforcement stations and offices
  • Government buildings and locations with government meetings
  • Demonstrations, protests, and licensed public gatherings

The legislation also sets a default standard that unless a homeowner, business owner, or property owner says otherwise via express consent or signage, their home, business, and land are gun-free zones as well.

Along with expanding the list of gun-free zones, the process to obtain a permit is more expensive and involved thanks to the passage of the new bill.

The cost for a permit is now $25, up from $2, and applicants must purchase gun owner liability insurance with coverage of at least $300,000 for injury, death, or damage to property as a result of exercising 2A rights.

Additionally, applicants must provide four character references that are “non-related persons.” The applicant and their references must also be willing to submit to interviews with law enforcement to determine whether the prospective concealed carrier could be a threat to themselves or others.

“New Jersey continues to lead the nation in combatting gun violence and demonstrating how commonsense gun laws help keep residents and law enforcement safe,” said Attorney General Platkin.

“The legislation signed into law today, strengthens our efforts to keep communities safe by keeping firearms out of the wrong hands and away from sensitive locations, such as where children learn and play,” Platkin added.

SEE ALSO: New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy Signs 7 New Bills Tightening Gun Laws

GunsAmerica reached out to Mark Oliva, the managing director of public affairs for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the firearms industry trade association, to get perspective on the measure.

Oliva did not mince words.

“This is a direct challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court’s Bruen decision. Previous to Heller, courts used a ‘balancing interest’ test. That was the legal theory of a state’s need to provide for common safety versus the individual right to keep and bear arms. In that test, the government always won,” explained Oliva.

Heller said that the Second Amendment is the test. Courts ignored it. The majority in Bruen couldn’t have made it clearer. The test is the Second Amendment. Full stop,” he continued.

“New Jersey is drawing a very wide circle on sensitive places where individuals have the expectation to exercise their rights, especially the right to keep and bear arms and self-defense. It’s no different than New York saying Times Square is a sensitive place. There’s still a lot of crime and innocent people left defenseless against criminals that don’t care and get released immediately after arrest,” Oliva concluded.

As with New York’s concealed carry law post-Bruen, what NY state leaders called the “Concealed Carry Improvement Act, it looks like we can expect to see some challenges to New Jersey’s in the coming weeks.

Gun-rights groups are not going to let this abuse of power go unchecked.

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About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

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  • Steve January 2, 2023, 1:53 pm

    I hope that anyone who is remotely connected to a defenseless victim in NJ files a lawsuit against the state and the governor for removing their Constitutional right of being able to carry a firearm to defend themselves.

  • Donald Silvernail January 2, 2023, 8:40 am

    What if you got your driver’s license and it stated that it was illegal to drive on all roads except those that had signs specifically stating that it was OK? This new law is written to circumvent the constitutional decision. How dare those judges tell us what we can and cannot do in New Jersey! Time to legally slap that governor’s hand pronto.

  • Clint W. January 1, 2023, 10:49 am

    “…protect the welfare of all who proudly call our state home…”

    I can’t imagine there are any citizens in NJ who are ‘proud’ of the state that is second in line in the screwedupedness category next to California. Are there any Constitution supporting US citizens in NJ?

  • Doug Stead, December 31, 2022, 8:29 am

    Of course all the criminal element and mentally deranged are going to obey these constitutionally infringing laws as well as staying away from all the “gun free” zones now imposed upon the populace. These people who pass these laws are really stupid and unhinged devoid of any critical thinking skills whatsoever and the people who vote for them. SMH.

    • Ron January 8, 2023, 6:36 pm

      They just put a bulls eye on every location that a criminal can attack with no fear of being shot at himself. Gun Free zone ya right. Idiots!!

  • JD December 30, 2022, 10:49 am

    These are laws the elites make so they can keep the power over the average person. How often have you heard “I am so and so and I can do what I want without legal compromise”. The elites can have their taxpayer paid guards with however many rounds they want in their full auto weapons. While we cannot even have a handgun. Laws should apply fairly to all not just to the little guy. Hunter Biden lies on his gun purchase application. What happens? Nothing. Hidden from the public and the left leaning news does no news stories about that. Hilary destroys evidence the FBI subpoenaed. What happens? nothing. Does the news do any stories about the crime rate of CCW citizens vs. crime rate of active or retired police officers? they are not better than us and perhaps worse.

  • Martin December 30, 2022, 4:04 am

    They will never stop,even when there only 1 gun owner left

  • JonsOn December 29, 2022, 7:41 am

    If the law that Phil Murphy signed was about common sense then why was a lawsuit immediately filed against it? there is no common sense when it comes to restricting a person’s right to protect themselves from danger. I wonder who is more dangerous the common criminal who is out of the street or Phil Murphy and his leftist pals in Trenton. One is out to take your money and hope you are helpless against their theft and assaults while the other is out to take your money and wants you helpless against their tyranny, theft and assaults. Let’s hope Phil and his next door tyrant Kathy both have their attempts at tyranny struck down. It’s a shame that violating the 2nd amendment wasn’t an offence that could land them in prison.

  • bob onit December 28, 2022, 4:02 pm

    i’ll keep it simple, ” murphy is an idiot.”

  • paul I'll call you what I want/1st Amendment December 28, 2022, 8:24 am

    keep the guns out of the wrong hands……he obviously means the law abiding which is a strong statement to the left’s intent! All private property will be gun free zones unless posted wtf is up with that?????

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