Lawmakers: Safety training 'imperative' for concealed carry permits
Posted April 24, 2015
Raleigh, N.C. — A loophole in the law that allows people to carry a concealed weapon in North Carolina without taking a gun safety course has drawn the attention of state lawmakers, who say they'll look for a fix.
Two staunch gun-rights advocates, Republican Sens. Stan Bingham of Davidson County and Jeff Tarte of Mecklenburg County, questioned Virginia's practice of granting concealed carry permits to applicants who pass an online test.
Virginia offers permits to non-residents, meaning North Carolinians can take the online test and apply online through the Virginia State Police. If they pass the background check, they'll receive a concealed carry permit that's valid in North Carolina.
"I think it's a serious mistake," Bingham said Friday, after being informed that states which share reciprocity with North Carolina have less stringent standards.
Tarte called hands-on safety training "imperative."
"It's something that we definitely need to look at on our side if they're not doing any shooting or preparation or demonstrating any competency whatsoever," Tarte said. "It's a little nerve-wracking."
Bingham said he will re-file legislation to block reciprocity of permits that require only online safety certification.
"That just, to me, is a tragedy waiting to happen," he said.
Both men agree that responsible, permitted gun owners should be able to carry their weapons just about anywhere. Tarte is one of the sponsors of a bill that would further expand those rights.
"The only place you would not be able to carry with this permit is a courtroom," Tarte said.