Bill to abolish state pistol permit passes, but a veto is likely

Bill to abolish state pistol permit passes, but a veto is likely

Photo: Adobe Stock By a 27-20 party line vote, the North Carolina Senate passed a bill ( HB 398 ) Wednesday that would repeal the state’s pistol purchase permit requirement. The measure had passed the House in May after a heated debate, as Policy Watch previously reported . Gov. Cooper is likely to veto the bill, as he did with another measure that would have allowed people with concealed carry permits to bring guns onto church grounds that also serve as school properties. HB 398 would substitute the state purchase permit for handguns with the federal National Instant Criminal Background Check System managed by the FBI. The North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association previously opposed similar bills, but changed its stance this year. Eddie Caldwell, executive vice president and general counsel for the association, told Policy Watch the FBI check has become more effective — and now includes data and records including those related to mental health — making the state system obsolete. However, the FBI background check regulates only licensed gun dealers — not private sellers, such as those at gun shows and online. The state system currently applies to those transactions, but if the bill becomes law, no longer would. Without the FBI background check, those handgun sales would be essentially unregulated. Eddie Caldwell, NC Sheriffs’ Association Caldwell described the state pistol purchase system as duplicative, saying some individuals complain about being asked to go through a federal background check after obtaining a state permit, although the state law […]

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