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Concealed Carry Now the Law in Missouri

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GREAT NEWS! Missouri's state Supreme Court handed down their ruling today making CCW the law!

Efforts to get CCW in Missouri began back in 1992. It was narrowly defeated on the ballot in 1999, and some would say due to illegal activity at the polls by the Democratic party. After that, legislation was introduced (once again) at the state level, which was passed and then vetoed last July by Democratic Governor Bob Holden. In September, in true soap opera fashion, the governor's veto was overridden. The override hinged on one vote in the state senate, that of a pro-CCW senator who was on Reserve duty at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, but was given permission to return for the special legislative session to review and vote on all 31 of the governors vetos (including CCW). Two days before the law was to go into effect, a judge in St. Louis Circuit Court issued an injunction based on a lawsuit challenging the law on state Constitutional grounds. There were a number of points in the lawsuit, all of which were very weak. In fact, the judge (who's court for filing the lawsuit was chosen because of his known opinions against gun issues), threw out all but one point before issuing the injunction. The case was immediately appealed by the state Attorney General (who is anti-gun, but at least he did his job in pursuing enactment of the law) to the state Supreme Court. The Supreme Court heard the case on January 22 and a quick decision was hoped for by both sides.

The Court was next scheduled to release any decisions on March 9, but handed down the decision today on this particular issue. One Justice dissented on the grounds that the law is not properly funded. But since the Sherriffs offices can charge a fee of up to $100 per CCW applicant, the other Justices didn't see it the same. As for the Constitutional argument against CCW, the Justices were unanimous in deciding that CCW does not violate the state Constitution. So it's final and done - we FINALLY have CCW in the state of Missouri! :-D
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CCW in Missouri

Glad to hear it Crash!!!! Now if everyone will support the law by paying the $100 to their sheriff's Dept it will stick... We pay $75 here in Wyoming for a five year permit..(I don't know what the renewl fee is, but I'll gladly pay it...) congrads..Les
 

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Good for the people of Missouri hope you don't have to wait long to get one. In GA. it cost 25.00 bucks I have had one for twenty plus years now can't remember the cost then 5.00 or 10.00. A friend went to get his afew month's ago took 18 week's to get it in hand GBI FBI who knows what they checked but he got one. :roll: Fred
 

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Congratulations CRASH! I hope the whole union goes that way, but I seriously doubt it. I remember 2 years ago when I moved to PA, I immediately I went for and recieved my CCW! What a great feeling to carry a firearm for protection LEGALLY!!! In Jersey (a real crap hole where I lived) I still carried, but I had to worry about the cops as well as the criminals!! Hey wait a sec.. That makes me one, dont it? :twisted:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, unfortunately for some of us, the soap opera continues... 8O

There are four counties that have already said they will not process applications and issue permits, including St. Louis City (the city is also its own county - weird, yes, but that's the way it is), which is where I live.

In the state Supreme Court's decision, four other counties were exempted from having to issue permits, based on a part of the state Constitution known as the Hancock Amendment. Basically, Hancock says the state cannot pass a law that will have associated costs of carrying it out unless the state funds such law. Well, the way the CCW law was written, it says each Sheriff's office can collect a fee for processing the application, not to exceed $100. But here's the kicker... the money collected from application fees goes into that Sheriff's "revolving fund" and must be spent, as written in the CCW law, on "training and equipment." Certainly, it takes more than just training and equipment to process the applications and issue the permits - most notably, man power. The intent was for the fees to provide the funding, but the anti-gunners found a technicality in the wording. :x

The group that originally contested the law as being unconstitutional used Hancock as one of their points. Oddly enough, their anti-gun judge in the St. Louis Circuit Court threw that point out (while upholding another argument as making the law unconstitutional). So while the state Attorney General appealed the case to the Supreme Court based on the point upheld by Judge Ohmer, the anti-gun group counter-appealed Judge Ohmer's striking down their Hancock argument. So the Supreme Court had to rule on more than one specific issue.

Well, challenges to state laws based on Hancock must be "ripe" to be considered by the court. That means a law can only be challenged based on Hancock if there is existing evidence that an agency, political subdivision, etc. faces actual expenses that were not funded by the state. When this case went to the Supreme Court, four counties presented estimates of what it would cost them to process the expected number of CCW applications in their respective counties. One expense that the Sheriffs already know will be incurred is a charge of $38 per application that the State Highway Patrol will charge them to process fingerprint analysis (the background check). The Supreme Court decided that, regardless of whatever other costs the Sheriffs estimate, the Highway Patrol charge is already a known thing (because they already provide that service for other reasons), so the Supreme Court specifically exempted those four counties from having to issue permits, based on the Hancock Amendment, because those four counties - and those four counties only - have provided evidence of an actual cost that is not specifically funded by state law. Otherwise, the Supreme Court ruled that the CCW law is constitutional and that all other aspects of it are now valid. That means a CCW holder in another state can now legally carry within the state of Missouri, that adults living in Missouri can legally keep a concealed weapon in their car even without a CCW permit, and that all the Sheriffs in the state can start processing applications and issuing CCW permits. In fact, even those four counties that did actually provide evidence and were subsequently exempted from having to issue permits, can issue permits if they so choose (they'd just have to find their own funding to cover the costs).

Well, within hours of the Supreme Court's decision yesterday, four more counties (including mine) announced that they will not issue permits because they plan to file suit for the same exemption based on the Hancock Amendment. I went to the Sheriff's office this morning and said I wanted to apply for my CCW permit. I was told that, although the St. Louis City Sheriff is equipped to process applications ("We're just waiting for the official word"..."We're ready to go."), they are not currently taking applications. The clerk who waited on me told me to keep an eye on the news because there will be a press release (although she didn't know when) that would provide a contact phone number for setting an appointment to apply.

So these four counties are continuing to play politics with the CCW law. Yes, there is the exception of the funding issue but, until a county (and each county must file its claim separately) files suit for exemption under Hancock, every county except those original four are required to comply with the law and issue permits. And every county must comply with all other provisions of the law, regardless of the funding issue, because it is a state law. So my Sheriff's office is stalling and playing politics, even though the Supreme Court has ruled the CCW law to be constitutional. :evil:
 

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This is correct. Currently, St. Louis County is refusing to issue the licenses based upon the Hancock issue. It does not look to be rectified in the near future.

I have spent the better part of the morning advising residents of this fact.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
blue said:
This is correct. Currently, St. Louis County is refusing to issue the licenses based upon the Hancock issue. It does not look to be rectified in the near future.
I have spent the better part of the morning advising residents of this fact.
Blue-

Are you in St. Louis County or St. Louis City? Both are currently refusing to process applications (along with two other counties). :(

I had to work this afternoon so didn't have a chance to actually call, but I did e-mail Jay Nixon's (state Attorney General) office this evening (maybe they'll relpy on Monday???). Basically, I explained what happened while I was at the Sheriff's office downtown, then explained my understanding that the Sheriff is obligated, until the courts say otherwise, to process applications and issue permits. I asked in my e-mail if this understanding is correct. I also asked that, if it is not, for the Attorney General's office to please provide a proper explanation to the contrary. Further, I asked that, if my understanding is correct, what recourse I have to see that 1) the Sheriff processes my application without undue delay, and 2) what recourse I may have to file a formal complaint against the Sheriff for refusing to process my application.

It's all politics and I'm really tired of it. I don't have the pocket-full of money these antis have to fight this battle, but I'll do what I can. And right now, everything I'm doing will provide documentation that the St. Louis City Sheriff is willfully violating state law, which has been found constitutional by the state Supreme Court.
 

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I feel Lucky to Live In Minnesota. Although it is a basically a Liberal/Democrat state it also is very Liberal laws concerning Guns. We have had conceal and carry laws for a very long time and lately have made them even easyer to conceal/carry We can have high capacity mags and can own some types of automatic weapons (Sorry No 50 cal stuff Ha)........Blast away
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well the state Attorney General's office seems to be of no help whatsoever. :(

I just called them and explained my experience with trying to apply for a permit last week. The man I spoke with did say there are some legal issues yet to be resolved and that the Sheriff's offices may have a policy of not taking applications and issuing permits until such issues are resolved. I asked if the counties except those specifically exempted in the state Supreme Court's ruling are obligated to take applications, and the man in the Attorney General's office himmed & hawwed a little but would not answer that. When I later asked him again he said "...we're not over them..." meaning that the Attorney General's office can not and/or does not dictate policy to Missouri's county Sheriffs. He added that answering my question would amount to the Attorney General's office taking a position, which they will not do.

That's disappointing, to say the very least, because my understanding is that the Attorney General's job is to enforce the law. You know, I try to do the right thing and follow the rule of law, even if I disagree with it. But it seems pretty pointless when government officials and agencies will do any damn thing they want, regardless of what any law says. My only question regarding that is, why don't government officals get put in jail for violating the law when we average citizens do? :x
 
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