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Illinois residents are applying for permits to carry concealed weapons at a rate of more than 1,000 a day - leaving local police agencies worried they won't be able to identify applicants with a history of violence.
Illinois law gives the State Police 120 days to investigate applications and issue permits. But at the beginning of the process, the law gives local police agencies 30 days to do their own investigations and ask a state panel to deny a request.
State Police officials say their checks are thorough enough to prevent unqualified applicants from slipping through the cracks.
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.
As the Illinois State Police get ready to begin issuing concealed weapons permits, they're letting residents know more about the requirements of the Illinois Firearm Concealed Carry Act.
Concealed carry license applicants must successfully complete 16 hours of firearms training, including classroom and range instruction. So the ISP website now includes a list of approved concealed carry firearms training curricula. The website also provides an updated list of qualified instructors.
Concealed carry license applications will be available by January 5, 2014.
More information can be found at the ISP's firearms ccw website.
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.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Lawmakers are set to meet in Springfield to consider a bill allowing the concealed carry of weapons in public on the day of a court-mandated deadline to pass such legislation.
Gov. Pat Quinn has asked for sweeping changes to a concealed carry bill, but lawmakers have been less than enthusiastic, so far, and are expected to override his changes.
Quinn wants an ammunition limit and to prohibit guns in any place that serves alcohol, among other provisions. He has backed his changes by focusing on violence in Chicago.
But several lawmakers say Quinn proposed changes come too late in the process.
Illinois is the only state without a law to allowed concealed carry. A federal appeals court ruled the state's ban unconstitutional and set a Tuesday deadline to allow it.