HB 303 looks into concealed weapon carrying without a permit
The Senate Judiciary Committee heard testimony on a bill today that aims to allow anyone who can legally possess a handgun to be able to conceal carry without a permit
Proponents say current Montana law violates citizens' second amendment rights, and that it doesn't make sense to need government permission to wear clothing over a weapon.
Bill proponent, George Hudson says, "The fact that you can't put a coat on over your gun is an infringement on the right to keep and bear arms."
Opponents of the bill say the ability to carry a concealed weapon within city limits is a privilege extended to citizens by the state. Ravalli County Undersheriff Perry Johnson says the process of applying for a concealed weapons permit is related to public safety.
Perry Johnson who opposes the bill, says, "Now we have a system that works very well. Whether or not you know it, but the sheriff's that I know really endorse this responsibility."
Bill sponsor Republican Representative Krayton Kerns says he's considering an amendment to the bill that would eliminate the word "possession" from the text. If the bill passes out of committee, the bill will go to the senate floor for a full debate.
Story by Charlie Misra
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