People could carry concealed guns if they get training and permits under a bill a key committee approved Thursday, after Republicans stepped away from a proposal allowing guns without permits that earlier stirred controversy.
The Joint Finance Committee passed the new version of the bill 12-4, with all Republicans voting for it and all Democrats voting against it. The Senate will take it up Tuesday.
The state Department of Justice would have to issue permits to state residents 21 or over who get training and clear background checks that showed they were not felons or otherwise prohibited from carrying guns.
The committee’s vote is a sign lawmakers will change the state’s concealed weapons law soon, but it is also a setback for those who sought a more dramatic rollback of the state’s gun laws. They had pushed for allowing Wisconsin to join the ranks of four states that allow “constitutional carry” – giving people the ability to carry hidden guns without having to get permits or training.
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