Monday, Mar 10, 2014
Illinois Concealed Carry Applications Go Digital
WSIL -- Illinois is just weeks away from processing concealed carry applications, but there are a few limitations that could hinder locals from signing up.
Illinois State Police launched a website earlier this week to provide the public with information regarding the concealed carry application process. The agency is moving into the digital age, but it could leave some applicants without a license.
State Police won't start accepting concealed carry applications until the beginning of January. For those interested in applying, there's a few steps that should be done ahead of time. Most of those steps can't be done without a computer.
If you head to the Illinois Concealed Carry website, you can find everything you need to know about getting your license to carry. The digital ID and fingerprints can be submitted prior to the January 5th start date to help expedite the process.
Right now, the applications are only available online. It's an aspect Representative Brandon Phelps, the former concealed carry bill sponsor, is hoping to change.
"There's a lot of people in rural areas around this state that may not have the resources or the technology to do that online, so we still want to get people the option that they can apply with paper as well," he insists.
State Police Spokeswoman Monique Bond says the agency wants the applications to be accessible to everyone and will evaluate the need for paper forms.
Meanwhile, the Firearm Owner ID Card applications, which have hit record highs in the last year, are still only submitted on paper.
"You know, you gotta have a FOID card to be able to get a concealed carry license, so it doesn't make a lick of sense you know, for one to be paper and one to be electronic only, when you need both," Phelps says.
He believes there could be upwards of 400,000 concealed carry applicants in the first year, and like many new programs, it won't be without a few kinks.
"I've told a lot of colleagues, let's try to pick apart this bill or you know, make it worse, make it better," he explains. "Let's see how it works first with the compromise and then we try to work on it later on."
ISP officials say so far there hasn't been any issues with the new site.
Representative Phelps says he's meeting with state leaders Tuesday to work on adding a paper application.
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