HB495 (Reciprocity & Concealed Carry Modernization) scheduled for second hearing in Senate

Chairman Mark Wagoner has announced that his committee will be hearing proponent/opponent/interested party testimony on Representative Terry Johnson's (R-McDermott) HB495 next Tuesday, December 4 at 3:00 p.m. in the North Hearing Room in the Statehouse. This will be the second hearing for this important bill.

Buckeye Firearms Association Chairman Jim Irvine will offer testimony on this important bill.

HB495, also known as the reciprocity & concealed carry modernization bill, makes three changes to current law:

  • Changes to automatically honor other states licenses, similar to a driver's license
  • Eliminates the "demonstrated competency" requirement for 2nd and future CHL renewals, making CHL training similar to a hunting license
  • Fixes the definition of a "loaded gun" to match the commonly accepted definition

HB495 also defines a "concealed handgun license" in one place rather than many places of the law as is currently done. This change eliminates hundreds of words to the code without making any material changes. This will make the law easier to read, understand, comply with and enforce; something that everyone should be in support of.

The changes to Ohio's reciprocity will enable people with an Ohio CHL to carry in more states. We will likely pick up the ability to carry in Pennsylvania, Georgia, Colorado and probably another 3-7 states. This is important for Ohioans who travel, especially the many who like to vacation in Florida.

The change will also allow those who live in Indiana and Pennsylvania and work or visit Ohio to carry concealed in our state. The Attorney General will still retain the ability to sign agreements with others states as in current law, but it will not require the agreement. This will reduce the workload of the AG office and align Ohio with the current trend toward similar legislation nationally.

The elimination of the demonstrated competency is not eliminating any training requirement. Ohio will still maintain a requirement for 12 hours of initial training, among the highest requirement nationally for a concealed handgun license. The elimination is simply for renewals, and is eliminating something that has never actually been done in over eight years of concealed carry, but will present problems going forward as there is no NRA or OPOTA class to deal with the requirement, which is not even defined in current law.

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