Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam issued the following statement following the U.S. House of Representatives’ passage of the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, which allows a qualified individual to carry a concealed weapon in states that allow individuals to carry concealed weapons.
“This is a historic day for law-abiding gun owners and an affirmation that our constitutional right to keep and bear arms does not end when we leave our home state,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam. “Florida operates the nation’s largest concealed weapon licensing program, and national reciprocity will reduce the burden on Floridians who travel out of state with their guns.”
Florida currently operates the nation’s largest concealed weapon licensing program with more than 1.8 million active licenses and has reciprocity agreements with 36 other states.
Since coming into to office, Commissioner Putnam has worked to make applying for or renewing a Florida concealed weapon license as convenient and efficient as possible. In 2014, Commissioner Putnam launched a first-of-its-kind partnership with county tax-collector’s offices to receive applications, take fingerprints and send the information to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services for processing. To date, 51 counties participate in the program and nearly 250,000 Floridians have applied for or renewed a concealed weapons license at a tax-collector’s office.
The department also expedites concealed weapon license applications for all active military members and veterans. To date, more than 90,000 active military members and veterans have received expedited concealed weapon licenses. And for the third time since taking office, Commissioner Putnam announced in June of 2017 that the fee to apply for or renew a concealed weapon license was lowered.