Gun owners start push back against Malloy pistol fee hike

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HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Over 250,000 Connecticut residents hold a Connecticut ‘Permit to Carry Pistols and Revolvers.’ To get one, you must take a training course and currently pay a $70 fee for a five-year permit. As we first reported last week, the governor’s budget plan calls for increasing that fee to $300. The state fee for background checks would also rise from $50 to $75.

Tuesday, members of the state’s largest gun rights organization, the Connecticut Citizens Defense League, began the first in a series of major push backs against the hike by attending a hearing on the Public Safety division’s budget.Related Content: Malloy budget plan bad news for smokers and shooters

Scott Wilcox of Middletown says that with his wife and three kids getting permits he may be priced out of legal gun ownership.

“It seems rather punitive to jack the permit fee up 400 percent. It’s definitely punitive,” said Wilcox.

Others not only see the hike as cost prohibitive, but another infringement on their second amendment rights.Related Content: Transcript of Governor Dannel Malloy’s Fiscal Year 2018-2019 Biennial Budget Address

“I have three people in my family adding another $900 to permits. We’re not gaining anything. They’re charging us $900 (for) the same amount of time, five years,” said Alan Blaschik of East Haddam.

The governor said Tuesday that the move was not a provocation against gun owners and that it was just to bring Connecticut’s fees in line with surrounding states because Connecticut is losing money on pistol permits.

“Given the amount of work that has to be done with respect to licensure we probably were not, in fact, we weren’t covering our costs,” said Malloy.

Later this week the CCDL, will be joined by the NRA and the Newtown-based firearms industry trade group the National Sports Shooting Foundation to announce their intentions to fight the fee hike.

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