The Santa Monica Police Department (SMPD) will begin issuing Concealed Carry (CCW) licenses again as the Board voted unanimously to accept the proposed $617 fee for new applicants. Previously, the SMPD forwarded all applications to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD).
However, following a recent Supreme Court ruling in June 2022, LASD has faced a flood of applications that has exceeded their processing capacity. In a 6–3 decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Brewen, the majority ruled that New York law was unconstitutional and that the ability to carry a gun in public was a constitutional right under the Second Amendment.
Prior to the Supreme Court’s ruling, there was a requirement in California state law that a “good cause” was required for the issuance of a CCW. Applicants must show that the danger is significantly reduced if the applicant carries a concealed firearm.
Following this ruling, California Attorney General Rob Bonta said the state’s “good cause” requirement was also likely unconstitutional and should not apply.
Until March 1, 2017, the SMPD handled all requests from Santa Monica residents. However, the policy was changed after that date so that all CCW requests went to LASD, but only after the Supreme Court ruled that applications from independent municipalities such as Santa Monica exceeded the Sheriff’s Department’s capacity.
During the Council meeting on Tuesday evening, Sgt. Scott McGee of SMPD explained what CCW stands for. “A Concealed Carry Permit allows a citizen to legally carry a pistol, revolver, or other firearm that can be concealed.
“A license to carry may be issued by the sheriff, county or municipal police department under the Penal Code,” McGee said. “State law allows a permit to be issued to a person if they meet certain requirements.”
According to McGee, the person must be a resident of Santa Monica, be of good moral character, have received firearms training and qualifications, be at least 21 years of age, and have no criminal record that would disqualify the applicant.
Council member Oscar de la Torre asked if the two-year renewal process included a psychological re-evaluation, to which McGee replied “no” and that in order to have a review every two years, the SMPD “must have very specific and well-articulated reasons why we feel they are [the individual seeking to carry a handgun, hidden from view, in public] need another one.”
According to the city, LASD currently has about 150 applications in various stages of the process for Santa Monica applicants: 83 are pending, 46 have already been approved, 9 have been rejected and 11 are inactive.
“So, in the city of Santa Monica, 46 residents are licensed to carry concealed weapons…” repeated de la Torre. “And just so we understand,” he added, “realistically, when will you be able to draw this weapon? What is the legal way to use these weapons? And what then would be illegal, so that we understand exactly what we are talking about here?
“I think the situation there dictates a bit. I haven’t seen anything in the Penal Code regarding CCW and when they can and can’t [sic]”. McGee replied. “In light of a life-threatening situation or when there is a moment of serious bodily injury to you or someone else and they believe there is no other possible solution for that scenario.”
Mayor Glim Davis noted that recently in the state of California, she saw a sign in a service window that said, “Weapons are not allowed inside,” and asked if there was any way to control where someone actually carries a concealed weapon, such as , on the pier. , For example. City Attorney Douglas Sloan responded: “Yes, for example, there are some restrictions. They may be prohibited from entering all the buildings of the city administration and so on.”
However, the legal details on the matter are currently still being worked out and discussed, city manager David White explained. “There is actually some state legislation being drafted and discussed in the state that is backed by the governor and has a number of different restrictions on where you can carry a gun. It will cover places like buildings, schools, places of worship and the like.”
White was referring to something called SB2, which lists almost everywhere you really don’t want someone to be able to bring a loaded firearm, but that’s not legal yet.
The proposal to use a third-party service to streamline the application process, with a fee of $617 for new applicants, was passed unanimously. Of these, $398 for new applications and $348 for renewals will go to the vendor. These costs do not include other fees for fingerprinting, psychological evaluation, and range safety course. The additional $219 will cover rising administrative and technology costs.
The Postal Council approves an increase in the fee for a concealed carry license, first seen in the Santa Monica Daily Press.