Inform, Entertain, Inspire
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Republicans revive bill to eliminate license requirement to carry handgun in public

Lauren Chapman/IPB News
Sen. Eric Koch (R-Bedford) insists it's normal to revive legislation that passed one chamber after it had been effectively defeated in a committee in the other.

Republicans have revived a bill to eliminate Indiana’s license requirement to carry a handgun in public.

A Senate committee took eight hours of testimony on so-called “permitless carry” legislation, HB 1077, last week. And at the end of it, the committee voted to overhaul the bill, keeping the permit system in place.

But House and Senate Republicans are ignoring that outcome and forging ahead with the original language that eliminates Indiana’s license requirement to carry a handgun in public. They've put it into a new bill, SB 209.

READ MORE: Senate committee stuns, guts bill that would've eliminated handgun carry permit requirement

Join the conversation and sign up for the Indiana Two-Way. Text "Indiana" to 73224. Your comments and questions in response to our weekly text help us find the answers you need on statewide issues. Trying to follow along with our coverage of the legislative session? We've compiled all the stories our reporters have published by bill number and topic here.

Sen. Eric Koch (R-Bedford)) insisted that’s normal.

“It’s not unusual for language that passes one house to appear second half elsewhere or appear during conference, in a conference committee report,” Koch said.

Sen. Rodney Pol (D-Portage) said Republicans are disregarding the objections of law enforcement, which almost universally opposes the bill.

Police say the permit system is the only way for frontline officers in the field to quickly know whether someone is authorized to carry a handgun in public.

“I myself have a sister-in-law that’s a law enforcement officer. Love her very, very much," Pol said. "And I’m very concerned about what this bill would essentially do.”

Both chambers must now vote to approve the bill for it to advance to the governor.

Contact reporter Brandon at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

Copyright 2022 IPB News. To see more, visit .

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.