NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The House Civil Justice Committee is set to discuss conceal carry permits Wednesday. The proposed bill could open up the pool of who can get a permit.
For perspective, last year more than 17,000 permits were issued in Tennessee.
The bill would essentially lower the age limit for conceal carry permits. Currently, if you are at least 21 years old or are 18 to 20 and meet military requirements, you are eligible. The bill would get rid of the military requirements and make it 18 and up.
For clarity, being 18 does not mean you would automatically get a permit.
"If the applicant is at least 18 years of age and is not prohibited from possessing a firearm in this state... or any other state or federal law, and the applicant otherwise meets all of the requirements of this section, the department shall issue a permit to the applicant," the bill reads.
If this bill were to become law there could be potential consequences when it comes to reciprocity.
A Department of Safety representative testified before a legislative committee last month and said this could potentially make Tennessee lose reciprocity with up to 21 states that do not allow people to carry at that younger age.
State Rep. Chris Todd, R-Jackson, who is a sponsor of the bill, said the bill simply gives more rights to younger adult Tennesseans.
"All this does is remove an infringement that we currently have on 18 to 20-year-olds that are legal adults, that have the ability and the right to cast a vote for you and I and others running for office, they not only have the ability, but the duty to sign up for selective service and get drafted and join the military," Rep. Todd said.
If the bill passes into law, it would go into effect on July 1.