Florida dropping CCW costs for its 1.7 million carriers

A Florida official on Thursday announced the fee for new and renewed concealed weapon licenses would be dropping effective Saturday.

In a statement from Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam’s office, he said he worked with state lawmakers to bring about the $5 reduction on application fees. Initial license fees will drop from $60 to $55 and renewals from $50 to $45. Active law enforcement, correctional and probation officers can get a new license for $55 and renew one for $45. A $42 fingerprinting fee and up to a $22 convenience fee for tax collectors who process licenses will remain intact.

License fees have been slowly dropping in recent years, with lawmakers shaving off $10 in 2016 and $5 the year before, meaning that a permit fee of $75 in 2012, now runs $55, plus fingerprinting and collection charges. In a fiscal analysis of past cuts, state budget officials noted that even the reduced fee revenue is more than sufficient to continue to fund the program.

“I’m a proud supporter of the Second Amendment and am dedicated to making our concealed weapon license application and renewal process as convenient as possible,” said Putnam, who is running for governor in 2018 on a platform that includes gun rights. “By reducing the concealed weapon license fee yet again, we can put the savings back in the pockets of Floridians.”

As of May 31, the Sunshine State had 1,755,746 concealed carry permits on file or about one per every 13 residents.

A 2016 survey by the Crime Prevention Research Center found that licensing fees vary widely across the nation from a low of $10 in South Dakota to over $150 in Illinois, putting the Florida rates about in the middle. The report also found that each $10 increase in fees reduces the number of adults with permits by about a half a percentage point.