CRYSTAL LAKE (AP) — A growing number of states have recognized Illinois' concealed carry weapons permit since the law took effect at the beginning of the year, according to a published report.
Twenty-two states honor Illinois' permit, The (Crystal Lake) Northwest Herald (http://bit.ly/1lcTV1i ) reported in a story posted online Sunday. The states include those surrounding Illinois, most of the Midwest and some in the West and South.
Illinois State Rifle Association Executive Director Richard Pearson said the state's 16-hour training course is likely a factor in that growth. Illinois' training requirement is among the most stringent nationwide.
Illinois was the last state nationwide to allow concealed carry.
Pearson said the list of states recognizing the Illinois permit could grow even more as other state's review their policies.
"Concealed carry is old hat to (other states), so they don't think there are going to be any problems," he told the newspaper. "If a guy wants to come from Illinois and he has all this training, let him."
However, Illinois doesn't have a reciprocity agreement with any states, meaning Illinois doesn't recognize other state permits. Gun owners who want to carry in other parts of the country can get nonresident concealed-carry permits for Utah and Florida. Those require four hours of training and are recognized in more than 30 states.
The bill lawmakers approved in 2013 was due to a federal court order, though the measure was fought hard by those who wanted Illinois to retain its last-in-the-nation ban on concealed carry.
Initially, state officials had said they expected about 300,000 concealed carry applications to be filed in the first year, though far fewer — about 84,000 — were filed in the first seven months of the year.
Information from: The Northwest Herald, http://www.nwherald.com