Texas concealed handgun licensing laws have changed - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Texas concealed handgun licensing laws have changed

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EAST TEXAS (KLTV) -

More than a dozen newly-passed laws impact the Texas Concealed Handgun Licensing Program. CHL instructors say at least half of those laws could directly affect East Texans.

The biggest change state legislators made when it comes to getting a concealed handgun license is the certification course itself. Previously, it was ten to fifteen hours long. Classroom training will now be a maximum of six hours long. For instructors like David Frick, that means teaching the same amount of information in less than half the time.

"Thereal kicker is going to be how we're going to be able to handle the Q and Apart," said DPS-certified firearms instructor David Frick.

Frick says it does concern him that his students may want or need more time than he can give them.

"I don't know of anything we can do at this point; legislators don't call us in and ask us anything," Frick said.

Additionally, the four hour renewal course in which CHL holders demonstrate their proficiency has been eliminated.

"That means that they can go right to their computers and they can renew their license online," he said.

Other changes include:

  • Reduced CHL fees for certain peace officers and veterans
  • CHL applicants are no longer required to provide their social security numbers
  • Colleges and universities may not prohibit CHL holders from storing a handgun or ammunition in their vehicles.
  • Categories of handgun proficiency are no longer significant

"That was a suspension, a 30-daysuspension, if they were cited for carrying a handgun of different category. Now the category does not matter," Frick said.

Despite the changes, Frick still encourages people to take it upon themselves to expand their handgun training.

"Absolutely," he said, "that can be a real...uh...jury saver."

The majority of these laws have already taken effect. The law eliminating the social security number requirement for a CHL doesn't start until next January.

If you'd like to read about these laws and some of the other CHL changes, click here.

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