advertiser content
advertiser content

So, Governor Reynolds has signed HF756. It's being referred widely as the "Constitutional Carry" bill - meaning that a citizen of Iowa derives their right to carry a weapon from the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution. So what has changed . . . and what hasn't?

As a disclaimer - I am not an attorney, nor do I play one on TV, Netflix or Prime. I am however a firearms instructor and have reviewed HF756, followed its progress through the Iowa legislature and I have talked with professionals in the field. Taking that all together, this is my opinion, and mine alone.

Let's chat about purchasing a firearm. The purchaser MAY NOT purchase a pistol or revolver if:

-they are under the age of 21 (unless their duty requires it - think police or military

-they are prohibited by federal law

-they are prohibited by court order

-they illegally possess a controlled substance-

they are committing an indictable offense.

Prior to HF756 a person either needed to obtain a permit to acquire or be in possession of a permit to carry a concealed weapon. The permit to acquire requirement will go away July 1st, 2021. Either a valid permit to carry concealed or the passing of a background check through the National Instant Check System (NICS) will be required to complete the purchase.

Permits To Acquire will remain available if you desire to get one.

Let's chat about carrying a concealed weapon next. Let's just let HF756 speak for itself:

"724.5 Availability of permit not to be construed as prohibition on unlicensed carrying of weapons. The availability of a professional or nonprofessional permit to carry weapons under this chapter shall not be construed to impose a general prohibition on the otherwise lawful unlicensed carrying or transport, whether openly or concealed, of a dangerous weapon, including a loaded firearm."

Simply put - even though carry permits will remain available through the state - they are no longer required to carry concealed within the state of Iowa. There is also no out-of-state limitations. If someone visiting you wishes to carry concealed they may, provided they are legally entitled to do so.

Why should I even get a concealed carry permit then?? Well, if you are looking to carry concealed in other states - you will need a valid carry permit from the state of Iowa for reciprocal agreements to be honored. The fact that Iowa offers constitutional carry will not be honored in states that honor Iowa carry permits. They will expect to see an actual permit.

But, but - what about training??? If you choose to use constitutional carry within the state of Iowa - no training will be required. However, if you expect to carry in, let's say Florida, you will still need an Iowa permit to carry and that permit requires training as it has in the past.

Let me chat about training for just a minute. The defensive use of a firearm to protect yourself, your family or someone in your charge should not be taken lightly. I encourage my students to take some type of coursework annually to insure they are staying current in the use of their firearm. I suggest they expend at least 100 rounds a month at the range maintaining their skills. Shameless plug here, I offer a broad range of course work for pistol, rifle and shotgun as well. I believe you have a responsibility to learn how to use this particular tool to the best of your ability and good, solid coursework is one of the best ways to accomplish that.

Still, in under all of this, the Constitution guarantees that you have the basic right to defend your life and the lives of your family. You do not need the permission of any political entity - federal, state or local to do so. I believe this step by the state, and the Governor is the right one.

I encourage you to read HF756 yourself. You will find a link to the bill HERE.


Bill Keller

Owner, Eastern Iowa Firearms Training


Submit a Comment

Please refresh the page to leave Comment.

Still seeing this message? Press Ctrl + F5 to do a "Hard Refresh".

GB April 8, 2021, 11:36 pm Very informative and well written Bill. Thank you! 2A
RS April 9, 2021, 11:51 am Enjoyed your input on CCL.
We have a in office disagreement as to what the law says. Where in the Iowa law does it speak to being able to carry concealed.
Also you may know but in case you don't AZ just passed a law protecting their people from the Federal Government Gun Regulations. Look at the AZ Bill HB 2111. I ask our legislative people to look at it as it may be something we in Iowa should have.
TB April 9, 2021, 1:03 pm Well done, Bill. I just want to point out that this new law is for open or concealed carry. Iowa does not have any concealed carry specific law other than carrying in the state capital, a weapon must be concealed. Otherwise, it is open or concealed carry.

The Iowa's Firearms Coalition and the NRA are the only two organizations who pushed this bill through the legislature and made it happen. Others have already tried to take the credit. I urge you to look at facts before sending money or joining other organizations who claim credit for this work and the "shall issue" legislation several years ago.
BK April 9, 2021, 2:06 pm Hey Roger . . . from the paragraph above . . . "shall not be construed to impose a general prohibition on the otherwise lawful unlicensed carrying or transport, whether openly or concealed, of a dangerous weapon, including a loaded firearm: . . . "openly or concealed" it the descriptor you are looking for . . .
RS April 10, 2021, 10:08 am Thanks Bill!
I agree with you, that was the paragraph that caused the argument.
RR March 21, 2022, 8:16 am I am under the impression that even with constitutional carry you still can not carry within 1000' of a school as this stipulatio is Federal and that is the reason for getting your carry permit so you can legally carry near a school.
advertiser content advertiser content advertiser content
advertiser content