It took just over a month for the Utah state legislature to approve a concealed carry measure that drops the requirement to first obtain a permit to exercise the right to keep and bear arms. 

Utah HB 60 was introduced on Jan. 6 and then passed the state House 51-20 and state Senate 22-6 this week, sending the bill to the desk of Gov. Spencer Cox. The proposal's sponsor, Utah state Rep. Walt Brooks, R-St. George, argued that permitless open carry is already the law of the land in the state, making permitless concealed carry a no-brainer. 

“Every single person has the right to protect themselves,” Brooks said. “It’s allowing a law-abiding citizen to be allowed (to put their gun) under their jacket or a wife to put it in her purse.”

The measure keeps Utah's existing Concealed Firearm Permit program while codifying that, so long as an adult over 21 can legally possess a firearm, they can carry one concealed without a permit. 

The current cost of CFPs is $53.25 for Utah residents and $63.25 for non-residents and requires a firearms familiarity course. According to statistics by the state's Department of Public Safety, in 2020 Utah had 267,777 active resident permits and 424,531 non-resident.

A valid Utah CFP can also be used to waive the background check and the corresponding fee when purchasing a firearm at a licensed dealer. The Beehive State is one of over 25 whose permit qualifies for such "Brady" exemptions.

As for HB 60, Cox has signaled support for permitless carry on numerous occasions, a marked difference from former Gov. Gary Herbert, who vetoed similar legislation in the past. Should Cox sign the measure into law, Utah will join the club already populated by Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Arkansas, Mississippi, Kentucky, West Virginia, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine.

Banner photo: Chris Eger/