Tea Party members submit petition to WinnCo board - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Tea Party members submit petition to WinnCo board


Concealed carry supporters deliver a stack of signatures to Winnebago County board members and talk about how they believe state law on the hot topic is unconstitutional.

It's important to remember now that even if Winnebago County passes an ordinance down the road allowing residents to carry a concealed weapon, folks can still be penalized for it considering the state law will take precedent over the county.

"You can't, as a political subdivision of state government which would be a municipality or in this case a county, you can't supercede the laws of the State of Illinois," said Dave Kurlinkus.

Winnebago County Deputy State's Attorney Dave Kurlinkus reacts to a request from Tea Party members and their 11,000 petition signees. They want the county to make its own ordinance allowing residents to carry a concealed weapon.

Supporters say they realize it goes against the state. To them, having the ordinance in place shows leaders in Springfield lawmakers are going against the will of the people.

"But we're showing the legislature what we want. Pike County already has a concealed carry. They can't carry, but they're showing their legislators what they want," said Mary Hastings, a concealed carry supporter.

Representatives presented the signatures accumulated over weeks of work to Winnebago County board members requesting that they hold public hearings. Then, within 60 days, propose an ordinance.

One supporter says the movement could be contagious influencing surrounding counties to take part.

"By Winnebago following suit, you're going to get Boone, Ogle, Jo Daviess, you're going to get all these other counties and pretty soon, they're going to have to listen," said Hastings.

Kurlinkus says as deputy state's attorney, it is his duty to uphold the supremacy of state law.

He'd advise the board not to move forward with the ordinance.

It would be against our office's advice to pass an ordinance that would be in contravention with state law.

The group says the same movement is already taking place in multiple counties across the state.

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