WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Lee County Board: No Gun Ban In Works but Public Discussion Now Likely

Aug 3, 2017

Lee County plans to comply with an order from the Iowa Supreme Court that bans weapons from courtrooms or areas occupied by court employees. But the head of the county board said that should not be interpreted as a ban on weapons from all county buildings.

Chairman Rick Larkin said the Supreme Court order, issued by Chief Justice Mark Cady, would affect the entire North Lee County Courthouse in Fort Madison and the 2nd and 3rd floors of the South Lee County Courthouse in Keokuk. He said that would be the extent of the ban.

Larkin said the only “talk” of a weapons ban came from recent television and newspaper news reports, not from the county board.

“There has not been any discussion, there has not been any ordinance written up or anything like that,” said Larkin. He spoke with Tri States Public Radio by phone Wednesday morning.

“In the past, there has really not been the sentiment to go ahead and do this, but there are some different members on the board now, and maybe, there may be, I don’t know. Beyond the article, that’s all that’s taken place as far as the Board of Supervisors have been involved.”

The published reports stated that county representatives were in the process of crafting an ordinance that would implement a weapons ban.

Larkin said, because of the reports, he would like to guage where the county board is on the issue of a ban on weapons in all county buildings. He plans to do so during an upcoming workshop.

“A lot of times, you could ban weapons but unless you have someone there to enforce it, people would still bring weapons in,” said Larkin.

Tri States Public Radio reached out to other members of the Lee County Board regarding the talk of a gun ban ordinance.

Supervisors Don Hunold, Matt Pflug and Gary Folluo each said they were not aware of any county representatives drafting an ordinance for their review. Supervisor Ron Fedler could not be reached for comment.