Kentucky House approves bill to let people carry concealed guns without a permit

Kentucky House approves bill to let people carry concealed guns without a permit
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The Kentucky House on Friday passed a bill that would allow people to carry concealed firearms without a permit or training.

The GOP-led state House voted 60-37 to approve the legislation and send it to Gov. Matt Bevin for a potential signature, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported.

The legislation had passed the state's Republican-controlled Senate last month on the one-year anniversary of the Parkland, Fla., school shooting.

The Hill has reached out to the governor’s office about whether he plans to sign the measure.

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Kentucky law currently requires people to get a permit before carrying a concealed firearm. The process includes a background check, gun safety training and $60 fee, the Courtier-Journal noted.

If Bevin signs the bill into law, it would remove the permit requirement for anyone who’s at least 21 years old and meets other legal rules for owning a gun.

Having a concealed-carry permit would still be available under the law but it would no longer be mandatory, the Courier-Journal reported.

The bill was endorsed by the National Rifle Association (NRA) and others who argued that the mandatory fees are unfair to people with lower incomes who want to carry a concealed gun for self-defense.

"This is simply applying and acting upon a constitutional right that each and every one of us has," said state Rep. John Blanton (R).

The bill was opposed by the Louisville Metro Police Department and the Kentucky State Fraternal Order of Police (FOP).

“We are supportive of the rights we protect for all citizens but have safety concerns with this bill as it stands,” the FOP group said in a tweet before the vote. “We are concerned this bill could have potentially deadly, unintended consequences,:

If the bill becomes law, Kentucky will become the 15th state to adopt a permitless carry or "constitutional carry" laws, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader. 

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