HONOLULU (KHON2) — Gun advocates said the city is dragging its feet approving concealed carry permits, and they claim the Koko Head Shooting Complex closure could make it even harder for people to qualify.
More than four months after the U.S. Supreme court ruled Americans have the right to carry a firearm in public for self defense, the Honolulu Police Department still has not issued any permits.
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Kainoa Kaku, the Hawai’i Rifle Association President, said the city is stalling.
“I want to emphasize, they could give approvals right now if they wanted to,” Kaku explained. “They could have done it back in June and July after it was passed.”
Part of the delay is lawmakers and HPD are still discussing rule changes.
“They are rule changes because there are already rules on the book. And again, they can approve CCW anytime they want. “
Two counties already have.
Maui was the first to issue a permit in Hawai’i. To date, they’ve issued at least 11 permits, and have more than 89 applications pending. The Big Island issued 19 and have 58 pending.
Kaua’i has at least 35 applications pending and Honolulu is sitting on 575.
In a statement, Ian Scheuring, Deputy Communications Director for Mayor Rick Blangiardi, said:
“HPD is completing its analysis of over 400 comments and other pieces of public input regarding the concealed carry rules and hopes they will be forwarded to the Mayor for signature soon.”
The new rules will likely include more training and proficiency requirements.
Kaku said that is a problem because there are only three ranges open to the public on O’ahu and the Koko Head Shooting Complex is closed– with no determined reopen date.
“Where do we shoot?” asked Kaku. “And I don’t know how they’re going to service the amount of people that need to shoot. We need to train if you want someone to be efficient and effective in using a firearm for self defense.”
808 Gun Club co-owner, Tom Tomimbang, said even if Koko Head Shooting Complex were open it would mot be practical since the pistol range is a minimum 25 yards to the target.
“And at 25 yards, trying to qualify in some kind of test or qualification course is going to be very difficult.”
Kaku’s advice to anyone who applied for a permit on O’ahu: prepare.
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“They got to get training depending on the type of qualification course these individuals have to go through,” said Kaku
A spokesperson for Honolulu City Council said they are expecting to hear the issue in November.