With the adoption of Idaho’s ‘Enhanced CCW’ permit, the neighboring states of Idaho and Washington now fully recognize each others’ (enhanced) CCW licenses. Now if we can just get grumpy old Oregon on board . . .
Idaho has offered a ‘basic’ CCW license since 1990. It’s been liberally (in the ‘generous’ sense of the word) issued to just about anyone over the age of 18 without a disqualifying conviction. Local LEO’s had the choice of whether to require any specific training to qualify for a basic Idaho CCW, and most chose not to.
This, ahem, ‘liberality’ has caused most other states to deny CCW reciprocity to Idaho CCW holders. States typically only grant reciprocity to other states with CCW laws that are as equally stringent as their own. And those that also recognize the first state’s CCW permits. Idaho’s ‘problem’ was that few other states issue CCWs to anyone under 21 years old, and many of them have some form of training requirement as well. Under either prong, Idaho’s basic process wasn’t strict enough to be granted reciprocity by most states.
This smacked of inequity, since Idaho was just as generous at recognizing other states’ CCWs as it was at handing out its own. Idaho’s reciprocity rules are simple and generous: if you have a CCW from any jurisdiction in the country, you can pack in Idaho. God bless the Gem State.
Despite this generosity, Idaho’s legislature saw that its citizens were getting the fuzzy end of the stick when it came to reciprocity. Last summer they decided to authorize a new ‘Enhanced’ CCW process, in order to encourage more states to recognize Idahoans’ CCW permits. The new Idaho ‘Enhanced’ CCW licenses require some training, and are only issued to qualified applicants over the age of 21.
The old ‘basic’ Idaho CCW is still available (though not widely recognized outside the state) but the ‘Enhanced’ CCW is now granted reciprocity by 30 states including Washington.
Not among them? Oregon. The Beaver State is a real party-pooper on reciprocity because Washington and Idaho recognize Oregon CCWs, but Oregon doesn’t recognize theirs. Adding insult to injury, many larger Oregon counties have slightly anti-gun sheriffs who use their discretion (if not their judgment) to deny most nonresident CCW applications.
This CCW snobbery can be circumvented if Washingtonians and Idahoans apply for CCWs from the handful of Oregon jurisdictions (including Grant and Columbia counties) which routinely issue Oregon CCWs to nonresidents.
Isn’t it awesome to see a state government actually working to protect and enhance the 2nd Amendment freedoms of its citizens? I almost want to move to Idaho after writing this, but Boise is stinking hot in the summer (and bitter cold in the winter) and I promised my wife I’d never take another Bar Exam again.
But I digress. Hopefully all of this state-by-state reciprocity talk will be redundant someday when we can celebrate nationwide reciprocity or right-to-carry, but for now it’s at least another step in the right direction.