Shooting Ranges and Dealers Are Critical Infrastructure and May Remain Open!
Gun Ranges and and Federal Firearms Licensees may remain open!
Governor Hogan's latest order (dated March 30, 2020) states:
This Order controls the occupancy and use of all businesses, organizations, establishments, and facilities that are not part of the critical infrastructure sectors identified by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (currently described at https://www.cisa.gov/identifying-critical-infrastructure-during-covid-19) (collectively, “Non-Essential Businesses”).
That cross reference to the DHS website is controlling as to the scope of the Governor's definition of "non-essential businesses." Stated differently, the order expressly does NOT apply to businesses that are part of the "critical infrastructure sectors," as defined by DHS. That cross reference thus requires reference to the DHS site in order to determine what is a "critical infrastructure" business.
At that DHS website is the Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce: Ensuring Community and National Resilience in COVID-19 Response Version 2.0 (March 28, 2020), available at https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/CISA_Guidance_on_the_Essential_Critical_Infrastructure_Workforce_Version_2.0_Updated.pdf. That document sets out the "identified essential critical infrastructure workers," which includes: "Workers supporting the operation of firearm or ammunition product manufacturers, retailers, importers, distributors, and shooting ranges." Those businesses may remain open, including "firearm or ammunition . . . retailers" and "shooting ranges."
We endorse the Governor's recommendations for safe practices while at these facilities. See https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/. If you have any questions on the scope of the Governor's orders, you should consult your lawyer. The Governor's orders have the force of law and a violation of the orders is a criminal misdemeanor. See MD Code, Public Safety, § 14-114.