As of July 1, Idaho residents over 21 that may legally obtain a gun may carry a concealed weapon throughout the state without a permit.
Steven Adams, head instructor of Choice Defense Training and an administrator at BYU-Idaho, said that previously, the state allowed residents to carry concealed weapons nearly anywhere within the state without a permit, so long as they were in lawful possession of their firearm and they were not in a municipality that required permits for concealed carry.
“This legislation (. . .) removed that clause, and it said you can now carry concealed anywhere in the state as long as you are lawfully in possession of your firearm,” Adams said.
Citizens who are eligible to own a firearm but are between ages 18-21 may be issued a license to also carry a concealed weapon statewide, according to SB 1389. The law already allows these individuals to carry a concealed weapon anywhere in the state except for within city limits.
By opening up the concealed carry policy among all of the municipalities, no gun safety training will be required for anyone who meets the legal criteria to own a gun.
“I really like the idea of permit-less concealed carry,” Adams said. “I think it recognizes our rights as free people, but in the same breath, I think we should all be getting training if we’re going to exercise that right with a firearm.”
At the time he signed SB 1389, Gov. Butch Otterson said in a letter to the President of the Senate concerning the legislation that while the amendment is consistent with the Constitution and Idaho’s values, he is concerned with the lack of training required to carry a concealed firearm.
“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,” Otterson said in the letter.
Adams said citizens not only have the right to carry a concealed weapon, but that it comes with a certain responsibility if they choose to do so.
“Carrying a firearm around all the time is not a simple issue,” Adams said.
He said that one who chooses to carry a concealed weapon has to consider a variety of legal, moral and safety-related points.
“I think just as a moral person, if you’re going to carry a firearm, even just for hunting, you should be trained, in my opinion, well beyond hunter’s ed,” Adams said.