Gov. Rick Scott signed 44 bills into law Thursday afternoon, including one allowing concealed weapons to be carried without a permit during emergency evacuations and another that will shield police body camera videos from public record laws.
The concealed carry bill is a favorite project of Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, who says the change in law will allow lawful gun owners to avoid criminal citations for simply carrying their belongings with them while evacuating from a hurricane or other disaster.
Opponents have said there should be fewer guns on the streets during emergencies, not more.
The body camera legislation, sponsored by Sen. Chris Smith, R-Ft. Lauderdale, is intended to protect people’s privacy when police officers enter homes, hospitals, mental health institutions and anywhere else where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy.
Open-government advocates say that law enforcement agencies can use the language to shield video that is in the public interest, particularly now that video is being used more frequently in broader debates over the role of police in society.
But supporters argue that privacy protections will encourage more agencies to use body cameras.
Here's the full list, courtesy of Scott's office: