A proposal to let South Dakotans carry concealed weapons without permits died on a narrow vote Thursday morning.
The bill, from Rep. Lance Russell, would have let anyone permitted to carry a gun under federal law carry it concealed. Currently, those individuals have to apply for a permit, pay a $10 fee and undergo a background check before they are allowed to carry concealed weapons.
Rep. Lance Russell, R-Hot Springs, called the permit requirement a “relic” and said it isn’t necessary in the days when police cars have computers that can conduct instant background checks.
But law enforcement officials opposed the bill, saying it had unintended consequences and could interfere in their ability to prevent gun crimes and issue an “open invitation for motorcycle gangs.”
Seven of the 13 legislators on the House Local Government committee agreed and voted down Russell’s bill, House Bill 1010.
A similar bill was defeated last year in its first committee hearing. After it went down, a modified version passed the Legislature but was vetoed by Gov. Dennis Daugaard.
Russell said he’s going to try one more time to get support for his bill, using a parliamentary maneuver to force a vote of the full House on the measure.
Voting for the bill were Reps. Scott Craig, Isaac Latterell, Stace Nelson, Betty Olson, Herman Otten and Leslie Heinemann. Voting no were Reps. Anne Hajek, Troy Heinert, Karen Soli, Burt Tulson, Kathy Tyler, Tona Rozum and Tim Rounds.