PASADENA - A bill by Assemblyman Anthony Portantino, D-La Canada Flintridge, that would ban the "open carry" of unloaded handguns is scheduled to hit the Assembly floor Thursday, according to Portantino spokeswoman Wendy Gordon.

The measure sailed through the Assembly's Appropriations Committee last Wednesday following a demonstration of both open-carry supporters and opponents in Old Pasadena the week before.

AB 144 makes it a crime to openly carry an unloaded handgun in any public place or street. Violations are a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000. Law-enforcement personnel are exempt, as are hunters and others carrying unloaded weapons under specified licensed circumstances.