August 29, 2014

DOJ holds hearings on concealed carry

The Department of Justice is working to finalize permanent rules for how Wisconsinites qualify for concealed carry permits. The agency is holding three hearings across the state this month. Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen says it’s a chance to see if there are any areas DOJ missed in drafting the final version.

The state started issuing permits for concealed carry last November. Since then, over 100,000 have been granted.

The primary change in the permanent rules is the removal of a four hour minimum training requirement. The DOJ had initially justified the requirement as the bare minimum a training course would need to cover the basics of concealed carry, but a legislative rules committee objected to that provision. The agency has been operating under emergency rules since last fall.

Van Hollen says the permanent rules no longer make mention of how long a training course must last, although they still require a number of topics to be covered for a course from a certified instructor to count towards the approval of a permit. Those include covering the safe handling and storage of firearms and ammunition, along with where concealed carry is permissible.

While Van Hollen initially favored the four hour minimum, he’s confident the permanent rules will still ensure permit holders carry safely.

The first hearing is today at the Superior Police Department, with additional hearings later this month in Green Bay and Pewaukee.

AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:00)