SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Illinois House has allocated $33 million to set up a program designed to regulate the carrying of concealed firearms.
Lawmakers voted 96-17 for the $50 million supplemental appropriation Tuesday. Rep. Luis Arroyo - a Chicago Democrat - says about $500,000 is new general-revenue spending.
The legislation gives the Illinois State Police authority to use money from $150 concealed-carry permit fees to pay for the additional staff and equipment necessary to set up the program.
Lawmakers approved concealed carry last summer after a federal appeals court said Illinois' last-in-the-nation ban was unconstitutional.
Several complained the measure does not include $112 million a court has ordered be paid to union workers who didn't get their full raise in 2011.
FREEPORT, Ill. (AP) - Hundreds of people across Illinois have been registered as concealed-carry instructors. One of them is a reserve deputy with the Stephenson County sheriff's office.
Rena Kerchner formed the company Cloaked Carry LLC. She tells The Journal-Standard in Freeport that she wants to teach residents to be concealed-carry certified before Illinois launches its program next year.
Illinois approved a law in July allowing the public possession of a concealed firearm. Anyone who wants to carry a weapon first must complete 16 hours of training from a state-approved instructor. Those instructors must use the state's training curriculum. Illinois is the last state in the U.S. to allow concealed carry.
As of Thursday more than 850 instructors had been established across Illinois.
CHICAGO (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn says he plans to talk to the Legislature about making sure state police have enough resources at their disposal to deal with a backlog of applications for gun ownership.
The Illinois State Police continues to struggle with a backlog of applications for gun ownership. So it remains to be seen how they can handle an influx of requests for permits to carry concealed weapons.
The department has 49,000 applications for Firearm Owners Identification cards awaiting approval.
Police estimate there will be 400,000 applications for "carry" permits in the first year.
Quinn says he wants to make sure police are able to do their jobs.
In July Illinois became the last state in the nation to allow residents to carry concealed weapons.
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (AP) - So far, more than 50 instructors have been approved to train Illinois residents applying for applications to carry concealed weapons.
The Daily Herald reports 54 instructors have been OK'd for the program - most of them in northern Illinois.
Illinois State Police spokeswoman Monique Bond says as many as 1,000 more applications have been received.
In July, Illinois became the last state in the nation to approve a law allowing the public possession of firearms.
Anyone who wants to apply for a concealed-carry license must complete 16 hours of training from a state-approved instructor. The instructor also must use the state's training curricula.
Applications for concealed-carry licenses will be available from state police beginning Jan. 5.
A list of instructors can be found here.
A congressional staffer won't face any charges after leaving his loaded handgun in a mens' room at the Missouri Capitol.
Police say the gun belongs to 64 year old David Evans, legislative assistant to House Speaker Tim Jones. And Evans has a conceal-carry permit.
Capitol Police say the Kahr CM9 9mm pistol was in a holster and had a hollow point bullet in the chamber, along with six others in the magazine. It was found Friday morning on top of a toilet paper dispenser in a restroom near a House hearing room.
Police say no charges will be filed because Evans didn't break any laws. State law allows Missouri lawmakers and their staff to carry concealed weapons in the Capitol, as long as they have a permit.
Dozens of new laws take affect in Missouri today. Among them is the new carry conceal permit law, which shifts the process of issuing permits to county sheriff's departments and away from the state Department of Revenue.
Other new laws on the books today will hike the fines for passing or speeding in emergency zones on highways, allow drivers to show proof of insurance using their smartphones and tablets, and let cities decide if they want to allow ATVs on their streets.
There's a new law encouraging Missouri schools to teach first-graders the National Rifle Association’s Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program.
And another that requires scrap metal dealers to keep records of transactions involving catalytic converters.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A federal appeals court will hear arguments Oct. 3 over a push by gun rights advocates to let Illinois residents immediately tote firearms in public under the state's fledgling concealed-carry law.
Mary Shepard and the Illinois State Rifle Association want the Chicago-based 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to intervene after failing to sway a federal judge in East St. Louis to allow immediate concealed carry.
The Illinois Legislature passed the last-in-the-nation concealed-carry law July 9 against Gov. Pat Quinn's objections, giving Illinois State Police 180 days to set up the permit process and an additional 90 days to process applications.
Shepard and the rifle group consider that "foot-dragging."
The state counters the legal challenge is moot, and that the permitting process should be allowed to run its course.
CHICAGO (AP) - A Chicago federal appeals court isn't letting Illinoisans immediately tote firearms in public under the state's fledging concealed-carry law, but says it will give the matter a speedy review.
The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last week turned down the emergency injunction request by gun-rights advocates who wanted Illinois gun owners to be able carry concealed weapons now instead of waiting months for the permitting process to be set up.
Mary Shepard and the Illinois State Rifle Association say the wait is unreasonable and unconstitutional.
The 7th Circuit will hear the case, but hasn't scheduled arguments.
The Illinois Legislature passed the last-in-the-nation concealed carry law July 9 against the governor's objections. Illinois State Police have 180 days to set up the process and another 90 days to process applications.
CAHOKIA, Ill. (AP) - An Illinois lawmaker wants to change the state's new concealed-carry law to ban guns in places of worship.
The law bars concealed weapons from schools, courthouses, government buildings, libraries and public transit. But churches, mosques and synagogues must to post signs if they don't want people carrying guns onto the property.
Democratic Sen. Dan Kotowski of Park Ridge has introduced an amendment to change that, saying houses of worship "should be off-limits."
Pastor Charles Burton of Unity Fellowship Church in Godfrey supports the amendment, saying he refuses "to be governed by fear." But Pastor Cory Respondek of Living Water Church in Cahokia says churches should be able to decide for themselves.
The law was passed July 9 to comply with a federal appeals court ruling striking down Illinois' last-in-the-nation ban.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - A federal judge is rejecting a legal bid by gun-rights advocates who wanted people to be able to immediately carry firearms in Illinois under the state's new concealed carry law.
East St. Louis U.S. District Judge William Stiehl threw out the lawsuit filed by Mary Shepard and the Illinois State Rifle Association, siding with the state and saying the legal action is moot.
Shepard and the rifle group had argued it was unconstitutional to make people wait for the permit process to be outlined under the new concealed carry law that lawmakers passed July 9.
Illinois was the last state in the nation to ban the practice.
Illinois State Police have 180 days to set up a program before accepting applications, plus another 90 days to process the forms.