A new option to carry

Enhanced weapons permit becomes law Monday

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COEUR d'ALENE - Idaho's new enhanced concealed weapons license law goes into effect Monday.

Earlier this year, state lawmakers approved the NRA-backed reform measure which provides an additional concealed weapons license option, one with more stringent requirements and training.

When Idaho Rep. Joe Palmer, R-Meridian, introduced the legislation, he said the enhanced license would be recognized by more states than Idaho's basic concealed weapons permit.

"There have been numerous questions relating to this new section of the statute," stated a press release sent out earlier this week by the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office.

The sheriff's department reports that Idaho has reciprocity agreements with 11 other states, but the press release adds that: "Enhanced permits have not been recognized by any other states at this time because Idaho's Attorney General's Office is not able to negotiate reciprocity agreements until the law comes into effect."

Idaho recognizes valid concealed weapons licenses from all other states that issue them. The only requirement is that anyone carrying a concealed weapon must also carry a valid concealed carry license at all times.

The state attorney general's office reports that Idaho has signed reciprocity agreements with Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Louisiana, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming.

There are other states that recognize Idaho's existing concealed carry license, without a reciprocity agreement. Those include Alabama, Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont and Wisconsin.

Idaho concealed weapons permits are currently not recognized in California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Virgin Islands, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Illinois.

The non-enhanced concealed carry license will remain available. That permit requires proof of familiarity with firearms and accepts state agency-provided hunter education or hunter safety courses.

The enhanced license calls for eight hours of training with a qualified instructor that includes instruction in the use of deadly force, self-defense principles, and gun laws. Live fire training of at least 98 rounds of ammunition is also required.

The fee for the enhanced concealed carry license in Kootenai County will be $66.50.

Beginning Monday, the initial fee for a basic permit will increase from $59 to $66.50.

The sheriff's office takes photos and issues approved permits for civilians and retired law enforcement officers Tuesdays and Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

New permit applications and fingerprinting is on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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