- Associated Press - Tuesday, February 11, 2014

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Gov. Nikki Haley has signed a bill allowing people with concealed-weapon permits to bring their guns into restaurants and bars in South Carolina, if the businesses do not prohibit it.

The law took effect with Haley’s signature Tuesday.

The Republican governor stresses it is illegal for people to drink alcohol while carrying a gun. Under the law, anyone caught would have the permit revoked for five years, plus face up to two years in prison and a $2,000 fine.

Businesses can post a sign barring concealed weapons.

Opponents say mixing guns and alcohol invites problems.

The State Law Enforcement Division says more than 229,000 people in South Carolina have concealed-weapon permits.

South Carolina is the 46th state to allow some form of legal carrying of guns into businesses serving alcohol.