MADISON, Wis. (AP) – The Legislature’s rules committee voted Thursday to extend through mid-October temporary regulations that enacted Wisconsin’s concealed carry law.
The state Justice Department drafted the rules last fall to implement the Republican-authored law. The regulations allow anyone 21 years or older who can legally possess a firearm provides proof of training to apply for a concealed carry permit.
Republican lawmakers took issue with a provision in the rules that mandated applicants receive at least four hours of training, saying the concealed carry statutes don’t set out a minimum training time requirement. The Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules suspended that portion of the rules, as well as sections that required an instructor’s signature, contact information and location of training from completion certificates, in November.
The rules were set to expire on Saturday. DOJ officials asked the rules committee to extend them by 60 days so the agency has time to complete permanent rules. The panel complied, voting 10-0 to extend the rules through Oct. 16.
Committee Democrats complained the rules are too lax. But they noted the concealed carry law passed, the public wanted the law and not granting the extension would strip DOJ of its power to revoke permits. Sen. Chris Larson, D-Milwaukee, the committee’s co-chair, promised a more robust discussion when the committee sees DOJ’s permanent regulations.
The agency submitted a permanent rules package this week to Republican Gov. Scott Walker for his approval. The rules would require a number of new standards for training, including instruction on the use of deadly force and how to avoid violent situations, and reduce application fees from $37 to $30.
If Walker’s office approves the package, it would go next to committees in both the Assembly and Senate. The rules committee would have the final say on implementation.
Asked Thursday whether he agreed with the training requirements in the permanent rules, Walker said only that that his office was reviewing the proposal.