Concealed carry permit applications plummet in Kansas

Kansas saw a “steep decline” in the number of applications for concealed carry permits in the last fiscal year, Attorney General Derek Schmidt said Thursday.

Between July 1, 2015, and June 30, 2016, the Concealed Carry Licensing Unit received 5,874 applications, Schmidt said in a prepared statement. That is a decrease of more than 40 percent from the more than 9,800 applications filed in the prior fiscal year.

The applications surged following a legislative change in 2015 that allowed eligible Kansans to carry concealed without a license.

“Many Kansans continue to recognize the benefits of obtaining a license,” Schmidt said in the statement. “We are working with our sister states to expand recognition of Kansas licenses and anticipate additional states to begin recognition in the near future.”

Licenses are still required in most states, and Kansas licenses are currently recognized in 37 states.

More than 93,000 Kansans currently have active concealed carry licenses. Schmidt encouraged residents who intend to carry firearms to pursue training opportunities and comply with properly posted signs.

Stan Finger: 316-268-6437, @StanFinger