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updated: 2/7/2013 6:21 PM

Madigan schedules hearings on concealed carry

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Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD -- Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan is seeking public input on concealed carry of firearms and gun safety at two hearings later this month.

The Chicago Democrat announced Thursday that the Judiciary Committee will have public hearings Feb. 19 at the state Capitol and Feb. 22 in Chicago.

Madigan says the hearings will allow gun-rights advocates, gun-control supporters and police to "offer their views and argue their cases" on the issues.

A federal court rejected the state's concealed-carry ban in December and demanded the Illinois Legislature adopt some form of firearms possession.

Madigan says hearings are important after the court decision and the December school massacre in Connecticut.

Concealed-carry legislation that narrowly failed in 2011 has been reintroduced in the Illinois House.

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