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The state House passed Senate Bill 150 on Friday, which would do away with the current legal requirement for Kentuckians to undergo training and obtain a permit before they can carry a concealed deadly weapon.

Having already passed the Senate, the bill will now be sent to Gov. Matt Bevin, who can sign it into law or veto it.

Senate Bill 150 passed the House on a mostly party-line vote of 60 to 37, though Reps. Jason Nemes and Jerry Miller of Louisville were among the handful of Republican members to vote against the bill.

Current statutes and regulations in Kentucky require residents to take a firearms safety course and marksmanship test before obtaining a concealed carry permit. If signed into law, Kentucky would join just a dozen other states that do not require such training or permits to do so.

Proponents of the bill argued that requiring residents to pay for the training course is an undue burden on their right to bear arms, but opponents say they proliferation of guns carried by untrained individuals in public will put more people at risk of injury.

Just before the House voted on the bill, the Kentucky State Fraternal Order of Police issued a statement in opposition to SB 150 because of “the risks it poses for law enforcement,” adding that they want to see individuals with firearms carry some form of identification so that officers can be sure that they are not legally prohibited from carrying a gun.

The bill was supported and lobbied for by the National Rifle Association.

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Joe Sonka
Joe Sonka is a staff writer at Insider Louisville focusing on government, politics, education and public safety. He is a former news editor and staff writer at LEO Weekly and has also freelanced for The Nation and ThinkProgress. He has won first place awards from the Louisville Metro chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists in the categories of Health Reporting, Enterprise Reporting, Government/Politics, Minority/Women’s Affairs Reporting, Continuing Coverage and Best Blog. Email him at [email protected]