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Over 25 Iowa City businesses add new “No Weapons” signs

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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KWWL) - Several bars and restaurants in downtown Iowa City are participating in the Iowa City Downtown District's Safe Signage Initiative.

Gun owners in Iowa can carry firearms with a concealed carry permit, however they cannot possess a weapon when over the legal blood-alcohol limit of .08. These signs remind patrons of the business' policy and can be used kick them out if they disobey.

The ICDD says 80% of businesses at a recent meeting voiced support for adding signs that read, "No Firearms or Weapons Allowed on this Property." Organizers also say this is in response to recent shootings across the country.

"With events where firearms are injected into situations, it's just on their minds," Iowa City 'Nighttime Mayor' Joe Reilly said. Ten people were injured in an overnight shooting in Downtown New Orleans early Sunday morning.

Reilly calls this one of several steps the district is taking to promote safety downtown.

"We understand your rights as a permit-holder. But it's not appropriate to bring those permitted weapons into a business, especially when alcohol is a factor," Reilly said.

"People have too many, tempers flare and things get carried away," Johnson County gun-owner Jerry Goedken said. Goedken says recent shootings haven't pushed him to the point where he feels he needs to apply for a concealed carry permit.

"I just never thought I needed it," Goedken said.

The Iowa City/Johnson County Chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America recently praised the district's initiative.

"Collaborations between civic organizations, local business leaders, and decision makers create the best opportunity to identify common sense solutions to prevent gun violence," Holly Sanger said, a volunteer representative with Moms Demand Action.

Travis Breese

Reporter, Iowa City

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