Knife Rights is on the cusp of big things in Ohio. Following the enactment of their Ohio Knife Law Reform Bill earlier this year, a pair of bills in the House and Senate are working their way through the system right now, with the hopes of establishing knife law preemption in the Buckeye State.
The aforementioned Knife Law Reform Bill legalized the production and sale of switchblade/gravity knives in the state, opening the door for makers like Rick Hinderer Knives to try their hand at the form. And while it was already legal to carry autos in Ohio, as in many states this law did not benefit from preemption – in other words, stricter local ordnances could override the state-level ruling, complicating travel and making life hard for knife owners who simply want to carry a knife they like for utility purposes.
“Knife Law Preemption is a Knife Rights’ criminal justice reform effort that nullifies existing ordinances and prevents new local ordinances more restrictive than state law which only serve to confuse or entrap law-abiding citizens traveling within or through the state,” Knife Rights summarizes in their latest press release. “Preemption ensures citizens can expect consistent enforcement of state knife laws everywhere within a state.”
Here is the current status of the preemption bills. SB 156 just passed through the Senate and is going to a House vote; the accompanying HB 243, meanwhile will soon be voted on by the House Government Oversight Committee. If passed into law, these bills will be the crowning achievement of Knife Rights’s efforts in Ohio, which began in 2019. As is always the case with the busy organization, they have lots of other irons in the legislative fire, with ongoing efforts in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Louisiana continuing unabated.
Knife in Featured Image: Benchmade 4300-1 CLA