On March 24, the Idaho House voted 57-11 for passage of a concealed carry reform bill that abolishes the need for a license in order to carry a gun for self-defense.
The new exemption from a license requirement would apply only when persons are outside of city limits, but bill sponsors see it as a step in the right direction of abolishing a permit requirement altogether in the future.
According to the Twin Falls Times-News, the bill was sponsored by state representative Judy Boyle (R-Midvale), who seized on current concealed carry license exemptions for persons outside a city for “hunting, fishing, trapping, or other lawful outdoor activity.” Boyle argued that having a staggered requirement where one needs a license to carry a gun during one activity but not another creates ambiguities which could simply be settled by the 2nd Amendment.
Because concealed carry licenses would continue to be offered for Idahoans who want to carry in cities or who want the permit for reciprocity purposes with other states, Boyle’s bill also addressed the cost of those licenses. She argued that “it is not fair” to use the exercise of 2nd Amendment rights “as a tax-generating mechanism.”
Boyle’s bill drops first-time license application fees from $75 to $20 and renewal fees from $45 to $15.
State representative Pete Nielson (R-Mountain Home) read the 2nd Amendment into the record during debate on Boyle’s bill. Nielson wants to see concealed carry license requirements abolished in all areas of the state, and he believes Boyle’s bill sets the stage for that.
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