Newnan Centre will mirror city rules on carrying guns
by Celia Shortt
The Newnan Convention Center Authority plans to mirror the city of Newnan’s actions in regards to the new state gun law, which allows gun permit holders to carry in more places, including government buildings.
The current policy for the Newnan Centre meeting facility is no guns and they have the right to remove people who do not follow the rule, according to both NCCA Chairman Parks Avery and Newnan Centre Executive Director Carol Moore.
The new law going into effect July 1 allows concealed carry permit holders to carry their guns into bars, churches, government buildings, and certain areas of Hartsfield- Jackson International Airport. Conversely, all property owners except government entities can prohibit firearms on their property.
Moore said, under the new law, the only way they could prohibit firearms coming into the facility is through security personnel or X-ray scanners at the entrance.
Since the Newnan Centre is a city facility, both Avery and Moore believe their policy should mirror the city of Newnan’s policy with HB 60.
“We do not have a written ‘policy’ regarding the gun law or security procedures at city facilities,” said Newnan City Manager Cleatus Phillips. “While HB 60 and its impact has not been discussed by city council, I do not believe it’s financially reasonable to install security measures and hire personnel in order to restrict the carrying of firearms in city facilities.”
At Thursday’s meeting, Moore said they also could not afford security personnel or metal detectors.
“In essence, we do nothing,” like the city is doing, Avery said. The city is not planning on doing anything differently.
NCCA will continue to discuss conforming its policy with the city of Newnan’s.
Also at Thursday’s meeting, NCCA approved an agreement with AT&T to put its equipment at the Newnan Centre to boost the signal for AT&T cell phone system users.
Executive Director Moore said she has received some complaints of there being little to no AT&T signal inside the building.
“I think it is something we would like to have,” Avery said. “It helps us.”
“It helps our clients who come in with AT&T to have better cell phone service,” added Moore.
AT&T approached the Newnan Centre about using the equipment and will be providing it free of charge.
At Thursday’s meeting, NCCA:
• Heard an update on the Lower Fayetteville Road entrance plans. According to Michael Klahr, city engineer for Newnan, the project for the traffic circle and entrance will be rebid on May 27.
• Approved a bid of $39,006.28 for china and flatware for the Newnan Centre.
• Heard Executive Director Moore’s report. She reminded everyone business is usually slower in the summer. She also said the storage area is still in process, that she is working to get the carpet cleaned in the facility, and that the directional arrows at the entrance next to the neighboring Centre for Performing and Visual Arts will be repainted soon.