CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — A Wyoming legislative committee has endorsed a bill to allow citizens to carry concealed guns into legislative hearings and other meetings of public bodies around the state.

The House Judiciary Committee on Monday voted 8-to-1 to advance the bill to the full House.

Evansville Republican Rep. Kendell Kroeker told the committee he wanted lawmakers and others to have the means to defend themselves if anyone came into their meetings intent on violence.

Shelley Simonton, executive director of the Wyoming Association of Municipalities, suggested amending the bill to allow governing bodies to opt out of allowing concealed weapons at their meetings.

The committee rejected a proposed amendment from Rep. Charles Pelkey, a Laramie Democrat, that would have allowed governing bodies to opt out. Pelkey cast the lone vote against the bill.