Want to encourage residents to take firearms training classes? Give ’em a break!

An Arizona House committee voted in favor of a measure which would give a $80 tax credit for those who complete a concealed carry class. The sponsor of the bill, House Majority Leader Steve Montenegro says the credit “will encourage education for Arizonans who already legally carry a concealed weapon with no training.”

Currently, people can carry a concealed gun without completing any classes, however without training and a concealed carry permit, they do not have reciprocity with other states. About 250,000 residents currently have permits.

The proposed legislation would do more than just allow residents to apply for a concealed carry permit, it would also encourage them to complete the course, which includes a firearms qualification, specific law and legal issues in the state, including potential liabilities, and concealed carry best practices.

“When you want to make sure you don’t use a firearm, how you let people know you have one or not…these are lessons in firearms safety that are appropriate for the next generation of firearm users,” he said. “You can’t really put a price on safety.”

However, opponents of the bill have done just that. Democrats claim the state would be on the hook for or up to $240 million.

Rep. Anthony Kern, R-Glendale points out the legislation, aimed at training residents who already carry guns, should make Democrats happy. “The left is always saying we need to regulate Second Amendment, whoever wants to buy a gun needs to apply for a permit and needs to go into some kind of database.”

The measure cleared the House Ways and Means Committee on a 5-4 vote Monday night.