Editor’s note: This is the first story in a two-part series on concealed carry.
PRINCETON – On Tuesday, Illinois became the last state in the nation to allow a gun owner to carry concealed weapons, after the Illinois General Assembly voted to override Gov. Pat Quinn’s amendatory veto of House Bill 183.
The Senate vote was 41 yeas to 17 nays with local Senators Darin LaHood and Sue Rezin voting in favor of the override. The House vote was 77 yeas to 31 nays, with local Representatives David Leitch, Frank Mautino and Don Moffitt all voting in favor of the override.
In a statement on the concealed carry override, Quinn expressed his disappointment.
“Yet, despite my objections, members of the General Assembly surrendered to the National Rifle Association in the waning days of session and passed a flawed bill that allows people to carry guns in establishments that serves alcohol and allows people to carry unlimited guns and high-capacity ammunition magazine,” he said.
After Quinn took amendatory veto on the bill last week, he released revisions to what he called a “flawed bill that jeopardized public safety.
“We will keep fighting for these critical provisions that will save lives and establish a better, more responsible concealed carry law in Illinois,” he said on Tuesday.
LaHood released a statement shortly following the General Assembly’s decision.
“Quinn’s veto was obviously ill-advised and he should have known that the General Assembly would override his actions. This is long overdue,” he said. “The legislative session would not have been necessary had Quinn just accepted the will of the people instead of making his grand political announcement last week.”
What does this mean now?
In order to take part in the new concealed carry law, a person must be of 21 years old, have a valid Firearm Owner’s Identification Card and be issued a license by the Illinois State Police. The police department has been given six months to make applications for concealed carry licenses and must issue a license within three months of receiving a valid application.
To be granted a license, a person must complete firearms training. Stipulations on the ability to carry a concealed weapon are: A person cannot have a background of being convicted of a misdemeanor involving a threat or violence within five years of applying for a license; have a record of two or more DUIs or drug violations; cannot be a subject of a pending arrest warrant; and cannot have a record of court-ordered treatment for alcoholism, alcohol detoxification or drug treatment within the five years of applying for the license.
An applicant must also pay $150 for a new license or a renewal of a license.
According to Section 65 of the bill, some areas will automatically be prohibited of a concealed carry. A licensee cannot carry on several properties including school property grounds or child care facilities; government grounds; before a circuit court, appellate court, Supreme Court or building under control of the Supreme Court; in jails and prisons; hospitals and mental health facilities; on public buses and trains; at a public playground; in public libraries; amusement parks; or property grounds owned by a college or university.
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