COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN) -- Ohio could join several other states in offering military veterans an exemption for firearms training required to get a concealed carry permit. The bill, introduced by State Rep. Margaret Ann Ruhl, a Mount Vernon Republican, would recognize military training as a valid replacement.
“HB 288 aims to allow honorable military experience to substitute as firearms training,” Ruhl said. “This would save our veterans money and time and also eliminate the barrier to carrying a concealed weapon for those with military training.”
The current law allows military service to serve as a substitution only within six years immediately preceding the application. This bill would extend this to be a life-long exemption.
Gerard Valentino with the Buckeye Firearms Foundation supports the bill and says many veterans don't pursue their license because they can't afford them. He points out that Ohio wouldn't be the first state to make this move and none have had problems
"I find it difficult to believe that Ohio's veterans are dumber, less responsible, or more blood-thirsty than the veterans anywhere else," he said.
Amy Pulles with the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence opposes the bill.
"What it's doing is making a blanket assumption that just because you've served in the Armed Forces and that you're a veteran that you don't have something to learn from the concealed weapons training course," she said.
Valentino says training in the military is much more intense than the training civilians get in the concealed carry training course.
(Photo courtesy Getty Images)