Texas legislators just finished the last touches on a new bill, and have sent it off to Governor Greg Abbott. If passed, the Lone State’s concealed carry permit fee will be greatly reduced!
I sure wish Georgia lawmakers would work on this as well!
On May 11, Texas Senate gave their final nod of approval for SB 16, which was agreed upon in a landslide, with a 26-5 vote. In the passing of the bill, permit fees will be slashed from a whopping $140 to a more affordable $40 for first-time applicants, and from $70 to $40 for permit renewals.
There should not be such a large fee to pay to have the right to defend yourself! I am on board with Texas lawmakers on this one.
The measure was backed by Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick as a legislative priority this session, and he welcomed news of its final passage, arguing it was a win for both the Second Amendment and taxpayers.
“No Texan should be deprived of their right to self-protection because of onerous licensing fees imposed by the state,” Patrick said in a video message. “Senate Bill 16 will make lawful carry more affordable for law-abiding citizens across the state — taking Texas from being one of the highest fee states in the country to now one of the lowest.”
While active duty military and prosecuting attorneys in the state can obtain a free permit, and retired law enforcement, military veterans, judges and senior citizens pay discounted rates, the typical initial fee for a license to carry a handgun in the state is $140. Besides the reduction to $40, House lawmakers amended the proposal to further waive fees for law enforcement.
As of the end of 2016, there were 1.2 million active license holders in the state according to statistics from the Texas Department of Public Safety. Although a fiscal note from the Legislative Budget Board estimated the state would lose $22.3 million in revenue due to the license fee reductions through 2019, the $40 price of would still more than cover the program cost as DPS reported the expenditure to administer the program is only $27 per applicant to pay for background checks conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the state.
If passed, the bill will take effect on September 1, 2017.