Ohio saw a marked jump in the number of new concealed carry permits issued for all of 2015 and when compared to the year before.
Last year the state’s 88 county sheriffs issued 71,589 such permits and compared to the 58,066 such documents these lawmen issued in 2014. The high-water mark was set in 2013 with a figure of 96,972 new CCW licenses being issued.
The data comes from the Ohio Attorney General who is legally required to make known each March First the annual statistical data on the state’s concealed carry permit program. This was the 12th such annual report.
Each prospective CCW applicant must meet certain criteria as established by the Ohio General Assembly and which mandates the successful completion of a several-hour training class that includes some live firing of a weapon. There are some exceptions to this requirement but those numbers add very little to the total figure.
Besides issuing a resurgent number of new CCW permits, the state’s 88 county sheriffs did decline in 2015 - and when stacked up to 2014 – a larger number of five-year renewal CCW applications. Last year Ohio saw the approval of 44,551 renewal applications. Meanwhile, in 2014 that figure was 52,551 and in 2013 the corresponding number was 48,370.
Up too was the number of CCW permit application denials, the prohibition stemming from a failure of an applicant to meet the permitting process’s requirements. Last year the state’s sheriffs rejected 1,117 new CCW permit application requests. In 2013 that figure was 882, the Ohio Attorney General’s 23-page annual report notes.
CCW revocations soared, though in raw numbers they are dwarfed by both new permits granted and renewals approved. Last year Ohio saw the revocation of 530 CCW permits; up from the 373 revocations reported in 2013, the Ohio Attorney General’s annual report says.
The report does note; however, that revocation does not exclusively mean that an impacted CCW holder has committed a crime worthy of such documentation banishment. This subset of data includes such innocuous items as the holder moving out of state, dying, or else the holder volunteered for whatever reason to give up his or her license.
As for reciprocity that allows an Ohio licensed CCW permit holder to carry elsewhere, the Ohio Attorney General report lists 36 other states were such permission is granted; either through direct agreement between Ohio and another state or by what the Ohio Attorney General refers to as “automatic reciprocity.”
This list, by the way, does include Virginia, a state that on the same day the Ohio Attorney General’s report was unveiled Virginia’s governor restored his state’s reciprocity agreement with Ohio.
As for a county-by-county breakdown of new-CCW issuances in 2015, Franklin County (Columbus) led with 5,268 approvals. This number was followed by Northeast Ohio’s Lake County with 4,490; Montgomery County (Dayton) with 3,598; Hamilton County (Cincinnati) with 3,534; Clermont County with 2,356; and Warren County with 2,366.
In all, 34 of Ohio’s 88 counties each saw fewer than 350 CCW permit application approvals. Among the counties with the fewest number of approvals – not surprisingly all being rural with small overall populations – were, Coshocton County with 81; Meigs County with 95; Noble County with 108; Putnam County with 128; Monroe County with 134; and Van Wert County with 148.
For further details and a look at the complete report as well as the other 11 annual reports, visit the Ohio Attorney General’s official web site at www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov.
By Jeffrey L. Frischkorn
Jeff is the retired News-Herald reporter who covered the earth sciences, the area's three county park systems and the outdoors for the newspaper. During his 30 years with The News-Herald Jeff is the recipient of more than 125 state, regional and national journalism awards. He also is a columnist and features writer for the Ohio Outdoor News, which is published every other week and details the outdoors happenings in the state.