Governor Spencer Cox signed several different bills into law last week, one of which was the Constitutional Carry bill, HB 60.
Constitutional Carry, also known as permitless carry, will make it so that anyone who legally meets the requirements can legally carry a concealed gun without a permit. The requirements to meet are that the person be over 21 years of age and be legally able to have a firearm in his or her possession.
This new law will apply both to residents and non-residents of Utah who meet those requirements. Also, to clarify this law allows one to carry concealed LOADED, without a permit.
The idea behind Constitutional Carry is simple to understand. The thought is that the Second Amendment protects American citizens and their right to KEEP and BEAR arms. What do those two 4-letter words, keep and bear, actually mean?
To keep and bear means to own and carry.
Because that right also says that keeping and bearing arms shall not be infringed, more and more states are entering the permitless carry fray.
As the new law goes into effect on May 5, 2021, Utah will be recognized as the 17th state to enact this type of law. Below is a map of the others:
The green states on that map are the ones that have some form of Constitutional Carry already passed, the blue states are the ones that are shall issue, and the red ones are the bad gun states.
Of course this legislation has gotten some criticism from the anti-gun groups like the Utah Gun Violence Prevention Center who had this to say in a Tweet:
After enacting permit less carry in 2010, the state of Arizona experienced a 44% increase in aggravated assaults committed with a firearm. That figure represents 1,519 more gun-related aggravated assaults committed in 2016 as compared to 2010 #VETOHB60 @SpencerJCox @utahsenate
— Utah Gun Violence Prevention Center (@UtahGVPC) February 6, 2021
And of course, we’d like to point out that the above statistic doesn’t mean much when you consider that three of the safest states in the union–Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine–also have Constitutional Carry and seem to be doing fine.
Other notable information contained in the bill is that at the end of the fiscal year a portion of the unused funds from the Concealed Weapons Account will be transferred to a different fund to help fight suicide.
Utah’s Constitutional Carry law won’t go into effect until May 5, 2021 but it is coming and we will be sure to update our map when it does change. As of right now, you CANNOT carry a concealed gun in Utah without a permit.