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      Illinois lawmakers take a 'shot' at concealed carry

      UPDATED: Tuesday, June 4, 2013

      Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has filed a motion with the U.S. Court of Appeals seeking a 30-day delay of a mandate for the state to enact a concealed gun carry law.

      In a statement Monday, Madigan says she filed the motion in order to give Gov. Pat Quinn time to review the legislation passed last week.

      Illinois was the last state in the union banning the concealed carrying of guns when, in December, an appeals court panel struck down the ban. The court gave lawmakers until June 8 to legalize the concealed carry of firearms.

      Madigan says the current stay of the court's mandate expires in less than a week. She says that will significantly shorten the time set in the state constitution to allow Quinn to review legislation.

      (Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


      UPDATED: Monday, June 3, 2013

      A compromised concealed carry bill heads to Illinois Governor Pat Quinn's desk Monday.

      Lawmakers approved the gun bill Friday on the last day of the legislative session.

      If approved, applicants 21 years and older will be able to apply for a five-year concealed carry permit after completing 16 hours of training.

      Applications will require a $150 fee. Applicants are also subject to law enforcement approval.

      Concealed weapons would be banned from several sites like train and bus stations, government buildings and stadiums.

      But the measure would allow people to carry concealed weapons into restaurants.

      The bill is said to have the strictest mental health reporting requirements in the country.

      A federal court deemed Illinois' concealed carry ban unconstitutional in December. Lawmakers had a June 9 deadline to pass a law allowing it.


      UPDATED: Friday, May 31, 2013

      (AP) -- The Illinois Senate has approved a bill to become the last state in the nation to allow the carrying of concealed guns.

      The 45-12 vote Friday sealed a deal that was worked out with the Illinois House, which had rival but similar legislation that the Senate rejected.

      If the House approves the Senate's changes, the plan would go to Gov. Pat Quinn.

      In December, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered Illinois drop its ban on public possession of firearms by June 9.

      The proposed measure requires all local governments to allow concealed carry, but existing firearms ordinances can be retained.

      It would prohibit the carrying of guns in such places as schools, taverns and parks, but allows a gun to be kept securely in a car.

      (Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


      ORIGINAL STORY: Thursday, May 23, 2013

      The concealed carry debate rages on in Springfield.

      The Illinois Senate Executive Committee defeated a House bill Tuesday which would allow public possession of firearms.

      The main issue is home rule: The house bill would eliminate all local gun laws. But the senate president and many in the senate committee don't like taking away power from local governments.

      House lawmakers say having different rules in different communities will be confusing and unfair for gun owners because they could be prosecuted for a law they didn't know existed. But some senators say that's taking this whole idea too far. They believe the only thing that should be the same from city to city is the concealed carry law itself.

      "I think there's a great deal of common ground on the concealed carry portion of the bill but the preemption of every other municipal regulation of firearms is too much to swallow," Sen. Don Harmon, a democrat from Oak Park said.

      Senators also disliked that the house bill did not totally ban concealed carry in bars. It would only ban it if the establishment made fifty percent of its sales in alcohol. The senate has its own version of the bill. It doesn't eliminate local gun laws and it bans guns in bars altogether.

      The NRA says it's neutral.