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TBI announces oppostition to permit-less gun carry legislation

The senate version of Lee’s bill will advance to the Finance, Ways and Means Committee.
The senate version of Lee’s bill will advance to the Finance, Ways and Means Committee.(WIBW)
Published: Mar. 5, 2021 at 8:11 AM EST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Tennessee Bureau of Investigation officials testified Tuesday on their reservations regarding proposed legislation to allow permit-less handgun carrying in the state.

The bill passed a key committee in Nashville, leading to those 21 or older to be able to carry handguns without a permit.

An amendment to the original bill proposed by Governor Bill Lee was approved by the state senate judiciary committee. The amendment states an individual be 21-years-old to carry a handgun unless they are 18 and honorably discharged or retired from the Armed Forces. Members of the National Guard and people on active duty would also be permitted to carry guns without permits.

TBI officials announced their opposition to the legislation and stated nearly 5,500 individuals in 2020 were excluded from permits or had their permits revoked.

“We don’t have any issue, and support the underlying policy that those that are legally permissible to carry possess a firearm and to defend themselves,” TBI Senior Policy Advisor Jimmy Musice said. “What we think, though, is that the permit process allows us to actually do that by knowing if that person is lawful.”

Musice stated 63,000 people in Tennessee are considered “mentally defective.” This means they can not legally own a firearm for public safety reasons.

The bill will advance to the Finance, Ways and Means Committee. If approved, Tennessee will become the 32nd permit-less carry state.

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