Article I, Section 20 of the Delaware Constitution guarantees the right of law-abiding citizens “to keep and bear arms for the defense of self, family, home and State”. During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, local and state authorities in and around New Orleans, LA, declared a state of emergency and then used that state of emergency as an excuse to confiscate arms from law abiding citizens who were either relying upon those arms for the defense of self, family or home or were in the process of removing those arms from a place of danger to a place of safety so as to deprive the criminal element then present access to those arms.
The purpose of this Bill is to ensure that Delaware’s Emergency Powers Act can never be used as an excuse for such inappropriate conduct within the State of Delaware. This Bill clarifies the existing provisions of the Emergency Powers Act so as to ensure that the provisions of Article I, Section 20 are not violated during times of emergency.
This Bill will permit a lawful hunter to hunt with an approved handgun instead of a shotgun or muzzle-loading rifle during the regular shotgun and muzzle loader seasons in addition to the current season.