The multiple proposals being consolidated into larger bills would allow the arming of school teachers, permit guns in bars and churches and prohibit the government from releasing information on the identity of people who have permits to carry a gun. The proposals stop short of more radical ideas that have been floated in an already gun-friendly state, such as allowing residents to carry concealed firearms without a license.
Rep. John Meadows, R-Calhoun, a gun owner and head of the powerful House Rule Committee, said he would prefer to do away with all restrictions on guns.
"But I'm smart enough to know you can't do that," he added.
The legislation must receive approval from at least one chamber by March 7 or it will fail.
One measure from Rep. Rick Jasperse, R-Jasper, would allow education officials to permit people to carry firearms on campus. After a gunman in Connecticut killed 26 people in a shooting rampage at an elementary school, Republican lawmakers in Georgia and several other states proposed arming school employees in the hope it might deter other attacks.
Meadows said an earlier plan that set minimum safety and training requirements for those carrying guns in schools may be incorporated into the most recent House plan.
Under the proposal, gun owners could also carry a concealed firearm anywhere in an airport that is outside security checkpoints.
Current law bans anyone from receiving a permit to carry a weapon if they have received in-patient care at a mental health or substance abuse treatment center within the past five years. The language of the latest House bill would apply that provision to only those who have been involuntarily committed. However, Jasperse said that change was not intended and that the bill will likely be revised.
Those seeking a permit would have to give a probate court judge permission to request documentation on their treatment.
Separately, Senate lawmakers voted 41-10 on Monday to approve legislation that would prevent public housing authorities from banning tenants from keeping guns on the property. Under the plan, Georgia would recognize firearms licenses issued by other states. It would also forbid government agencies from publicly releasing information on who has a license to carry a firearm.
"We all understand some of the tragedies that take place with gun violence, but also the protections protecting those who can lawfully carry a gun," said Sen. Frank Ginn, R-Danielsville.
Democratic lawmakers urged their colleagues to reject the bills, saying gun restrictions or bans tailored to public housing complexes had made them safer.
"You are aware that you are proposing expanding access to guns in a national climate that is deeply troubled by the rampages that are going on, the lives that have been lost ...," said Sen. Nan Orrock, D-Atlanta. "Is this really an appropriate time for the Georgia Legislature to be throwing the door open a little bit wider to the proliferation of guns?"