BOISE - Gov. Butch Otter signed the bill to allow carrying concealed weapons without a permit inside city limits into law Friday afternoon.
Senate Bill 1389 will allow law-abiding Idahoans who are 21 years or older to carry a concealed firearm statewide without a permit. Permitless carry is already legal outside of city limits for individuals 18 or older, and open carry is currently legal within city limits.
In a letter addressed to the President of the Senate regarding this legislation, Gov. Otter encourages anyone considering concealed carry to take advantage of gun safety and training. The issue is one that has been raised by law enforcement throughout the creation and discussion of this bill.
Gov. Otter writes:
"I'm a gun owner, a hunter and a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association. I have consistently championed our citizens' gun rights throughout my years in public office, and I do so again today in signing Senate Bill 1389 into law.
"However, in considering the implications of this measure I am reminded of the plain language of the Second Amendment: "A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
"While S1389 is consistent with the U.S. Constitution, Idaho values and our commitment to upholding our constitutional protections from government overreach, I am concerned about its lack of any provision for education and training of individuals who choose to exercise the right to concealed carry. Such a safeguard would seem to be part of the Second Amendment's "well-regulated" standard. What's more, the addition of a simple training requirement in this bill could have addressed the concerns of our valued law enforcement leaders and others who cherish both the shooting culture and the safety of shooters and non-shooters alike.
"In the absence of such a provision, I encourage anyone considering concealed carry to take advantage of gun safety training opportunities available from many reputable sources throughout Idaho. I also encourage the Legislature to monitor the exercise of this new law and respond appropriately when and if the lack of statutory education and training requirement undermines public safety."
SB 1389 will go into effect July 1, 2016.