Some evidence on how high permit fees impact who gets permits

John Tedesco with the San Antonio Express-News and Brandi Grissom and Matt Stiles with the Tribune have this very interesting article on the cost of getting a concealed handgun permit in Texas.

But like many of his neighbors on the low-income South Side, Hartsfield hasn't applied for a gun permit, which costs $140 for the license fee and $100 or more for the 10-hour instruction class. . . .

But in a pattern that's playing out in San Antonio and other major cities in Texas, residents in low-income neighborhoods aren't taking advantage of the concealed-carry law as often as residents living in wealthier, more conservative areas.

The pattern surprises some gun owners, who wonder why more law-abiding citizens aren't applying for concealed handgun licenses in the inner city, where rates of violent crimes are higher. . . . .

The Texas Tribune version of the story has much more detailed information here.

This is the point that I have been trying to make with my research for years. Higher permit fees and the costs of getting training not only reduce the number of permit holders, but they also make it so those who benefit the most from permits don't get them. Both of those reasons work to reduce the benefit from right-to-carry laws.

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Blogger Rail Claimore said...

This is something else I've noted merely remembering numbers of permit holders in a few states. Georgia, for instance, has about as many permit holders as Texas does (400,000), but has about 1/3 the population. The difference?

Texas = permit application with state DPS, state-mandated full-day training class, passport photos, fingerprints, $250 application and training fee

Georgia = permit application with local probate court, fingerprinting, $70 fee

I would love to see a similar map for the Atlanta metro area and compare it to Houston and Dallas/Ft Worth, since they're roughly the same size and have somewhat similar political and economic demographics. But that can only be done at the county level in Georgia because the only public record available is the number of applications submitted per year for each county.

10/03/2010 12:28 PM  
Blogger blainenay said...

The same thing happens regarding the price of the gun itself. Since the demise of the so-called "Saturday Night Special," low-income people have been shut out of the opportunity to own a self-defense firearm. Ironically, the ban on "Saturday Night Specials" never had the alleged intended effect -- keeping guns out of the hands of criminals. The ban only deprives poor people the ability to own the best means of self-defense -- a gun. The "Saturday Night Special" ban is racist.

10/03/2010 11:45 PM  
Blogger Raven Lunatic said...

The thing I find most interesting about the same image income/CCW images is that not only is it a question of income, but it seems to be income and relative income of surrounding neighborhoods. Places with high average income tend to have lower CCW rates in the middle than at the edges, even if they're only adjacent to a Slightly less affluent neighborhood.

10/05/2010 6:30 PM  

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