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House committee approves bills to enhance concealed weapons possession

House committee approves bills to enhance concealed weapons possession

Idaho Freedom Foundation staff
February 25, 2013
[post_thumbnail] Rep. Gayle Batt listens to testimony in the House State Affairs Committee.

The House State Affairs Committee has passed a pair of legislative proposals which, if they become law, would enhance the ability of private individuals to possess firearms.

“It is important that we do what we can to protect the Second Amendment rights of Idaho citizens,” said Rep. Gayle Batt, R-Wilder, co-chair of the committee.

House Bill 183 proposes to restrict the authority of local municipal governments to disallow the carrying of concealed weapons. According to Batt, the objective of the bill is to ensure universality from one region of Idaho to another on the allowance of concealed carry weapons.

The bill would remove language from existing Idaho Code allowing local jurisdictions “to regulate, prevent and punish for the carrying of concealed weapons.”

“House Bill 183 is basically a clarification, a ‘cleaning up,’ if you will, of existing statutes,” Batt told IdahoReporter.com. According to her, there have been conflicts with existing laws, some of which were passed in 2008 and some dating back to 1967. She said HB 183 seeks to rectify these inconsistencies and to allow for the carrying of concealed weapons statewide.

Rep. Vito Barbieri, R-Dalton Gardens, a member of the committee, concurs with Batt. “The idea here is to keep the control of concealed weapons with the state and not with local governments,” he told Idaho Reporter.com.

Another piece of concealed carry legislation, House Bill 192, which also passed in the committee Monday, would create an additional “enhanced” concealed carry permit in Idaho.

“It’s important to note that this new permit would not replace or eliminate the existing permit that is issued in our state,” Batt told IdahoReporter.com. The bill would, however, create an additional permit that would involve higher levels of training, and that would likely be honored in several other states. “We anticipate this new permit would be valid in up to 40 other states,” Batt noted.

“I think this will help Idahoans that travel intrastate with concealed weapons,” said Barbieri. “The present system of having to get an Idaho license and then to obtain a separate concealed carry permit in other states is too cumbersome. It’s about time we took care of this.”

Both HB183 and HB192 will now go before the full House for consideration.

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