Business Premises Safety Act
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Business Premises Safety Act

Date: December 17, 2008
By: Emily Coleman
State Capitol Bureau
Links: Get the bill

JEFFERSON CITY - A recently prefiled bill would remove the responsibility from a business to implement security measures to protect its customers. It also would not allow a business to restrict the possession of a firearm in an automobile not owned or leased by the business.

Sen. Delbert Scott, R-Lowry City, the sponsor of the bill, said businesses should not be liable for the criminal actions of third parties.

"We have instances of businesses being sued over crimes that occurred on their property that had nothing to do with them or their preparation for crime, for instance parking lots where they were well lit, where they had taken on the precautions, had video cameras for security," Scott said.

Opposition is more concerned with the provision that allows employees to carry a firearm while in a vehicle that is not owned or leased by the business while working.

"Everyone we arm makes our society that much more dangerous, and we're letting a lot of people off of taking personal responsibility for their behavior," Sen. Joan Bray, D-St. Louis County, said.

Scott said he thinks the insurance agencies already have safety practice mandates. There are things businesses can't control, he said, and businesses should not be held responsible for those occurrence.

The bill was filed last session as well but never made it to the floor for debate.

Scott said most of the opposition it faced in previous years came from trial lawyers who were against restrictions on those liable.

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