NRA Mobilizes Utah Members and Supporters to Oppose Permit Fee Increase

The National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action is asking members and supporters in Utah to attend a hearing to voice their opposition to a recent fee increase for first-time Utah Concealed Firearms Permit applicants.

On Thursday, August 24, the Administrative Rules Review Committee is holding a hearing and has requested that the Bureau of Criminal Identification (BCI) appear and explain their reasoning for the recent fee increase for first-time Utah Concealed Firearm Permit applicants.  During this hearing, a slot of time will be allotted for public input.  

“The NRA rejects this back-door, unauthorized increase to the permit fees,” said Catherine Mortensen, NRA Spokesperson. “If a moderate fee is justified, it must be approved by state lawmakers. We need this protection to ensure state bureaucrats don’t once again raise permit fees to fund unrelated government programs.”

NRA has worked tirelessly over the years in Utah and other states to reign in excessive fees charged for concealed firearm permits.  There have been times in the past when CFP fees were being used to fund government programs unrelated to the issuance of these permits.  To ensure that won’t happen again, the appropriate process for proposed fee increases is to be run through the legislative process where bright lights can be shined on the data and information can be provided by state agencies.The bottom line is, if a moderate fee increase is justified, it must be run through the Utah Legislature when it convenes in January.  The process by which this fee has been implemented purposefully circumvented legislative action and removed any ability for the public to submit input. 

The hearing will be held Thursday, August 24 at 9:00am in Room 445 of the State Capitol.

Without the necessary consideration and approval by the Utah Legislature, BCI has unilaterally implemented that fee increase, effective August 1, 2017.  BCI has told NRA that the fee increase is suddenly necessary based on a five-year-old policy change by the FBI.  Five years ago, the FBI reportedly decided that they would only accept fingerprint submissions electronically.                                  

Previously, BCI would mail fingerprint cards to the FBI for processing.  With the FBI’s change five years ago, rather than mailing the cards, BCI now scans the cards and electronically transmits fingerprints to the FBI.  BCI asserts that, in order to transmit the prints electronically to the FBI, they must first run the prints through their database.