The bill enacts a comprehensive mechanism that permits a person in specified circumstances to obtain a license to carry a concealed handgun and that establishes rules that govern the carrying of a concealed handgun.
Obtaining and renewing a license to carry a concealed handgun
Making the application
Under the bill, upon the request of a person, at least 21 years of age, who wishes to obtain a license to carry a concealed "handgun" or to renew a license of that nature, a sheriff must provide to the person free of charge an application form prescribed by the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission.
The applicant must submit the completed application form and all of the following to the sheriff of the county in which the applicant resides or to the sheriff of any county adjacent to the county in which the applicant resides.
- A color photograph of the applicant that was taken within 30 days prior to the date of the application.
- A nonrefundable license fee, no more than $45, as prescribed by the OPOTC in consultation with the AG, except that the sheriff must waive the payment of the license fee in connection with an initial or renewal application for a license to carry a concealed handgun that is submitted by an applicant who is a retired peace officer, a retired staff officer, retired park officer, forest officer, preserve officer, wildlife officer, or state watercraft officer of the Department of Natural Resources (hereafter, "DNR officers"), or a retired federal law enforcement officer who, prior to retirement, was authorized under federal law to carry a firearm in the course of duty, unless the retired peace officer, DNR officer, or federal law enforcement officer retired as the result of a mental disability.
A license to carry a concealed handgun issued under the bill expires four years from the date of issuance. A licensee must be granted a 30-day grace period after the license expires during which the license remains valid.
One or more of the following competency certifications, each of which must reflect that, regarding a certification within the three years immediately preceding the application the applicant has performed that to which the competency certification relates:
- The applicant is an active or reserve member of the armed forces of the United States or within the six years immediately preceding the application, the honorable discharge or retirement to which the certification relates occurred
- An original or photocopy of a certificate of completion of a firearms safety, training, or requalification or firearms safety instructor course, class, or program that was offered by or under the auspices of the National Rifle Association.
- An original or photocopy of a certificate of completion of a firearms safety, training, or requalification or firearms safety instructor course, class, or program that satisfies all of the following:
- it was open to members of the general public,
- it utilized qualified instructors who were certified by the National Rifle Association, the Executive Director of OPOTC, or a governmental official or entity of another state,
- it was offered by or under the auspices of a law enforcement agency of Ohio, another state, or the United States, a public or private college, university, or other similar postsecondary educational institution located in Ohio or another state, a firearms training school located in Ohio or another state, or another type of public or private entity or organization located in Ohio or another state.
- that the applicant is an active or reserve member of the armed forces of the United States, was honorably discharged from military service in the active or reserve armed forces of the United States,
- or is a retired trooper of the State Highway Patrol, a retired peace officer, a retired DNR officer, or a retired federal law enforcement officer who, prior to retirement, was authorized under federal law to carry a firearm in the course of duty.
Criminal records check and incompetency records check
Upon receipt of an applicant`s completed application form, supporting documentation, and, if not waived, license fee of not more than $45, a sheriff must conduct or cause to be conducted a criminal records check.
The sheriff must conduct the criminal records check and mental incompetency records check required by this division through use of an electronic fingerprint reading device or, if the sheriff does not possess and does not have ready access to the use of an electronic reading device, by requesting BCII to conduct the checks.
Destruction of records
If the criminal records check and the incompetency records check conducted by the sheriff do not indicate that the applicant fails to meet the bill`s licensing eligibility criteria, the sheriff must destroy or cause a designated employee to destroy all records other than the application that were made in connection with the criminal records check within 20 days after conducting the criminal records
Places where guns cannot be legally carried
- A police station, sheriff`s office, or state highway patrol station, premises controlled by BCII, a "state correctional institution," jail, workhouse, or other "detention facility," an airport passenger terminal, or a state institution for the care, treatment, and training of mentally ill or mentally retarded persons (as used in this provision, "state correctional institution" includes any institution or facility operated by the Department of Rehabilitation and Correction
- A "school safety zone," in violation of the prohibition against illegal conveyance or possession of a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance in a school safety zone
- A courthouse or another building or structure in which a courtroom is located
- Any room or open air arena in which liquor is being dispensed in premises for which a D permit has been issued under the Liquor Permit Law, in violation of the prohibition against illegal possession of a firearm in liquor permit premises,
- Any premises owned or leased by any public or private college, university, or other institution of higher education, unless the handgun is in a locked motor vehicle or the licensee is in the immediate process of placing the handgun in a locked motor vehicle;
- Any church, synagogue, mosque, or other place of worship, unless the church, synagogue, mosque, or other place of worship posts or permits otherwise;
- A child day-care center
- An aircraft that is in, or intended for operation in, foreign air transportation, interstate air transportation, intrastate air transportation,
- A place in which federal law prohibits the carrying of handguns
WHY OHIO NEEDS A RIGHT-TO-CARRY SYSTEM
Ohio is one of only five states that lack some sort of permit system for concealed weapons.
Thirty-six states have a "Shall Issue" permit to carry system similar to the one established by House Bill 12
House Bill 12 gives Ohio citizens the same right to self defense already available to the majority of Americans.
Research has shown that violent crime rates tend to drop when Right-to-Carry permits become available.