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 See our Preemption of Local Laws policy summary for a comprehensive discussion of this issue. 

Preemption Statutes

Utah Code section 76-10-500(2) states:

Section 53-5a-102, adopted in 2004, elaborates upon this policy. It provides, in part:

Exceptions

Section 10-8-47(1)(c) specifically grants city boards of commissioners and city councils the authority to “regulate and prevent the discharge of firearms…”

Sections 76-8-311.1 and 76-8-311.3 allow correctional, law enforcement, and mental health facilities to prohibit or control firearms and ammunition.

Interpretation

In the 2006 case Univ. of Utah v. Shurtleff,2, the Supreme Court of Utah held that the University of Utah was subject to section 53-5a-102(5). The court held that article X, section 4 of the Utah Constitution—which confirms the rights held by public universities and colleges at the time of statehood—did not prevent the application of section 53-5a-102(5) to the University, and that the University’s policy prohibiting students, faculty, and staff from carrying firearms on campus was preempted.3

Other Statutory Provisions

The Utah State Board of Regents may “authorize higher education institutions to establish no more than one secure area at each institution as a hearing room…but [may] not otherwise restrict the lawful possession or carrying of firearms.”4 The Board may also authorize higher education institutions to make a rule allowing a dormitory resident to request only roommates not licensed to carry a concealed firearm.5

Immunity

For state laws prohibiting local units of government (i.e., cities and counties) from filing certain types of lawsuits against the gun industry, see our page on Immunity Statutes in Utah.

  1. (6) As used in this section: (a) “firearm” has the same meaning as defined in Subsection 76-10-501(9); and (b) “local authority or state entity” includes public school districts, public schools, and state institutions of higher education. (7) Nothing in this section restricts or expands private property rights.[]
  2. 144 P.3d 1109 (Utah 2006).[]
  3. Id. at 1121-22.[]
  4. Utah Code Ann. § 53B-3-103(2)(ii)(A).[]
  5. Utah Code Ann. § 53B-3-103(2)(ii)(B).[]