AN ACT CONCERNING THE SAFE STORAGE OF FIREARMS IN THE HOME AND FIREARM SAFETY PROGRAMS IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

 Section 1. Section 29-37i of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2019):

No person shall store or keep any [loaded] firearm, as defined in section 53a-3, on any premises under such person's control if such person knows or reasonably should know that (1) a minor is likely to gain access to the firearm without the permission of the parent or guardian of the minor, (2) a resident of the premises is ineligible to possess a firearm under state or federal law, or (3) a resident of the premises poses a risk of imminent personal injury to himself or herself or to other individuals, unless such person (A) keeps the firearm in a securely locked box or other container or in a [location] manner which a reasonable person would believe to be secure, or (B) carries the firearm on his or her person or within such close proximity thereto that such person can readily retrieve and use the firearm as if such person carried the firearm on his or her person. For the purposes of this section, "minor" means any person under the age of [sixteen] eighteen years.

Sec. 2. Section 52-571g of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2019):

Any person whose act or omission constitutes a violation of section 29-37i, as amended by this act, shall be strictly liable for damages when a minor or, a resident of the premises who is ineligible to possess a firearm under state or federal law or who poses a risk of imminent personal injury to himself or herself or to other individuals, obtains a firearm, as defined in section 53a-3, and causes the injury or death of such minor, resident or any other person. For the purposes of this section, "minor" means any person under the age of [sixteen] eighteen years.

Sec. 3. Section 53a-217a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2019):

(a) A person is guilty of criminally negligent storage of a firearm when such person violates the provisions of section 29-37i, as amended by this act, and a minor or, a resident of the premises who is ineligible to possess a firearm under state or federal law or who poses a risk of imminent personal injury to himself or herself or to other individuals, obtains the firearm and causes the injury or death of such minor, resident or any other person. For the purposes of this section, "minor" means any person under the age of [sixteen] eighteen years.

(b) The provisions of this section shall not apply if the minor obtains the firearm as a result of an unlawful entry to any premises by any person.

(c) Criminally negligent storage of a firearm is a class D felony.

Sec. 4. Section 10-18b of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2019):

The State Board of Education, within available appropriations, [and the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association may] shall develop [curriculum] guides to aid local and regional boards of education in developing firearm safety programs for students in grades kindergarten to [eight] twelve, inclusive, in the public schools. The State Board of Education may consult with the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association when developing such guides. The State Board of Education shall make such [curriculum] guides available to local and regional boards of education.

Sec. 5. Section 10-18c of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2019):

(a) Any local or regional board of education may offer firearm safety programs to students in grades kindergarten to [eight] twelve, inclusive, in the public schools under its jurisdiction.

(b) No student shall be required by any local or regional board of education to participate in a firearm safety program which may be offered within the public schools. A written notification to the local or regional board by the student's parent or legal guardian shall be sufficient to exempt the student from such program in its entirety or from any portion thereof so specified by the parent or legal guardian.

(c) If a student is exempted from a firearm safety program pursuant to subsection (b) of this section, the local or regional board of education shall provide, during the period of time in which the student would otherwise be participating in such program, an opportunity for other study or academic work.

Approved June 3, 2019