In 2009, Arizona enacted a law allowing concealed weapons permit holders to carry handguns into the premises of a licensed bar or restaurant that serves alcohol unless the alcohol licensee has posted a sign that clearly prohibits the possession of weapons on the licensed premises. The sign must meet certain requirements.1
This law was subsequently amended in 20132 to eliminate the concealed weapons permit requirement for carrying a concealed handgun into the premises of an alcohol licensee. Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 4-229(A) now states, “A person may carry a concealed handgun on the premises of a [bar or restaurant licensed to serve alcohol] unless the licensee posts a sign that clearly prohibits the possession of weapons on the licensed premises.”
Note, however, that Arizona’s laws on this matter appear contradictory. Arizona lawmakers have not amended Section 4-244(29), which still states that it is generally unlawful for a person other than a peace officer (whether on duty or off duty) or the owner or authorized employee of an alcohol licensee “to be in possession of a firearm while on the licensed [business’] premises,” except in the case of “a person with a permit issued pursuant to [the CCW permitting law] who carries a concealed handgun on the licensed premises….” Section 4-244(30) also still makes it generally unlawful for the owner or employee of such alcohol licensees to knowingly permit a person in possession of a firearm to remain on the business’ premises, except if the person is a peace officer (whether on duty or off duty) or “a person with a permit issued pursuant to [the CCW permitting law]….”
Notwithstanding these contradictions, Arizona law does prohibit anyone, including a concealed weapons permit holder, from consuming alcohol while in possession of a firearm on the premises of an alcohol licensee business.3
Arizona law also prohibits possession of a firearm:
- In an election polling place on the day of any election;4
- On the person or within the immediate control of any person in a nuclear or hydroelectric generating station;5
- In any “public establishment,” or while attending any “public event,” after a reasonable request to remove the weapon and place it in the custody of the operator of the establishment or sponsor of the event for temporary and secure storage.6 (“Public establishment” means a structure, vehicle or craft owned, leased or operated by the state or a political subdivision.7 “Public event” means an event of limited duration conducted by a public entity or a private entity with a permit or license granted by a public entity);8 or
- On the grounds of a jail or correctional facility or a secure care facility under the jurisdiction of the Department of Juvenile Corrections.9
State administrative regulations may prohibit the carrying of firearms in additional locations.
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- 2009 Ariz. ALS 175 §§ 2, 3, codified as Ariz. Rev. Stat. §§ 4-229(A), (B), (E), 4-244(29)(C), (30)(C). The department of liquor licenses and control prepares the signs and makes them available at no cost to licensees. Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 4-229(D). The law also provides affirmative defenses if:
• The person was not informed of the notice prior to the violation;
• The sign had fallen down at the time of the violation; or
• At the time of the violation, the sign had been posted for thirty days or less. Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 4-229(C).
- See 2014 Ariz. ALS 253 § 25.
- 2009 Ariz. ALS 175 § 3 (codified as Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 4-244(31). This section has a minor exception to permit “the consumption of small amounts of spirituous liquor by an undercover peace officer on assignment to investigate the licensed establishment.”
- Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-3102(A)(11).
- Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-3102(A)(11).
- Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-3102(A)(10). Unless the operator or sponsor is licensed to manufacture, sell, or deal in liquor, the storage must be readily accessible on entry and allow for the immediate retrieval of the weapon on exit from the establishment or event. Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-3102.01.
- Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-3102(M)(2).
- Ariz. Rev. Stat. § 13-3102(M)(3).
- Ariz. Rev. Stat. §§ 13-2505, 13-2514, 31-129.