Senate approves out-of-state concealed weapons law

Posted: Wednesday, February 27, 2002

JUNEAU (AP) -- A proposed law requiring Alaska law enforcement to honor concealed handgun permits from all 49 states was approved in the Senate on Wednesday.

The measure would require state law enforcement to honor such permits regardless of whether those states have extended such a privilege to Alaska.

It would lower the threshold under current law, which requires other states to meet Alaska's standard for eligibility or to honor concealed handgun permits of Alaskans.

Alaska requires its residents to be at least 21 years old, be subject to fingerprinting and a background check, complete a firearms safety course and meet other requirements before receiving a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

Alaska has an agreement to honor the concealed weapon permits in 22 states, said Del Smith, deputy commissioner for the state Department of Public Safety.

Sen. Robin Taylor, R-Wrangell, sponsored Senate Bill 242. It passed the Senate 16-3, but could come up again on Friday for a final vote before moving to the House.

Sen. Lyman Hoffman, D-Bethel, voted in favor of the measure but also objected to it. Hoffman said the measure requires Alaskans to go through a more rigid process to obtain a concealed weapon permit than some other states.

Hoffman also objected to the current law because it does not require out-of-state residents to report to the state Department of Public Safety that they are legally carrying a concealed handgun. Hoffman said he will seek to amend state law to require this.

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