Much Discussion, Many Questions Concerning Illinois' Concealed Carry Law

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Published on October 11 2013 1:22 pm
Last Updated on October 11 2013 1:26 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

More than 130 people traveled to the Effingham County Sportsman's Club Thursday night to receive information on the state's new concealed carry law.

Illinois is the final state in the nation to legalize concealed carry.  State Representative David Reis who with State Representative John Cavaletto hosted the gathering said he never thought he'd see the day when concealed carry was legalized in the state due to strong opposition from the Chicago area.

(ST. REP. DAVID REIS SPOKE WITH A CONSTITUENT AFTER THURSDAY'S CONCEALED CARRY LAW INFORMATIONAL MEETING)

Reis said the next thing to do is to monitor the rulemaking process that will oversee how the law is administered.  He gave an example that some want all applications for concealed carry permits to be filed electronically, which would be a problem for those without access to a computer.

The concealed carry permit will cost $150 for five years and $150 to renew.  It'll cost you $75 to replace a lost or stolen permit.

A violation of the concealed carry law is a Class A misdemeanor for a first offense, punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine.  Stiffer penalties would follow for subsequent violations.

(LYLE KRUEGER OF THE EFFINGHAM COUNTY SPORTSMAN'S CLUB WITH ST. REP. JOHN CAVALETTO)

Reis said officials are ready to study consolidation of a firearm owners ID card and a concealed carry card into one permit.

The Illinois State Police have until January 5, 180 days after the law passed, to have applications for concealed carry permits available for the public.  Registration of approved instructors and courses is already underway and several are already available on the ISP website.  The cost of the course is set by the instructor.

Reis pointed out one law that was included in a completely unrelated package of bills that passed the General Assembly and was signed into law by the Governor.  The measure requires a private party who sells or transfers a firearm to use the State Police site to insure the purchaser has a valid FOID card.  He said the bill was not part of the concealed carry legislation, and told those gathered he expects efforts each year to undermine the concealed carry legislation.

The Illinois State Police website has 60 or so Frequently Asked Questions about the concealed carry legislation and the permitting process.  Reis said the PowerPoint presentation shared at Thursday's meeting is to be online today on his website and that of Cavaletto.

In the meantime, plenty of questions were heard from those present.  A presenter shared that he will keep his handgun completely concealed.  He said doesn't want anyone to know he's carrying.  He said it'll give him options, but in a tense situation won't leave everyone else looking at him as the answer to the problem.

It was pointed out that there is nothing in the Illinois law that says you have to retreat before you use deadly force, but the presenter encouraged those present to "think it through" as to how you'll handle difficult decisions before they occur.