August 10, 2020
By: Dwayne Page
More DeKalb Countians are choosing to obtain a valid Tennessee handgun carry permit.
According to the latest available records kept by the state, DeKalb County had a total of 2,492 handgun permit holders as of July 1, 2020. A significant increase from 1,321 ten years ago.
Classes are available locally for anyone wanting to obtain a permit
Randy Caplinger, an authorized state handgun permit class instructor, teaches a class at the county complex building at least twice a month.
“ I usually do them on Saturday mornings. It starts at 8 a.m. until around 12 noon to 1 p.m. I also occasionally do a night class on a Tuesday or Thursday evening for those who can’t make the Saturday morning classes. The Saturday class is just for one day and everything is completed that day. For the night classes we have to schedule a qualification at a later date so it’s a two-part class. The cost is $70. The only thing students furnish is their weapon and a box of ammunition. For those who do not have a weapon or ammunition, they can purchase ammunition through the class and borrow a gun. Most of them like to shoot their own weapon. Some people don’t have a weapon but still want to take the class. Either way we have it covered,” said Caplinger.
In order to take the class, participants must first receive a confirmation number from the state after completing information online at the link below
“It used to be you could just show up for the class but its not that way anymore. You have to be approved through the state and receive a confirmation number to be able to take the class. You go to https://www.tn.gov/safety/tnhp/handgun/handgunonline.html and click on the red box that says “Online Services” and it will take you to the option for “Driver Services” or “Handgun “Permits”. Then click on handgun permits and it will show you the different type permits being offered today. There are permits for “Concealed Carry Only” and permits which most people get called “Enhanced Permits” that allow you to carry in 37 other states with which Tennessee has a reciprocal agreement. It allows you to carry “concealed” or “open” whichever the student decides. Originally a permit was good for four years but now they are good for eight years and you have the option to get a lifetime permit. An eight year permit is $100 and the “Lifetime Permit” is $300. With the “Lifetime Permit” you never have to renew it again. Even if you get the eight year permit you can go back during that time and upgrade to a Lifetime Permit for $200,” he said.
“Beware of bogus websites that ask you for money to receive a confirmation number because they could gain access to your Social Security number and other personal information,” Caplinger continued.
“Once you finish the course go to any full service Driver Services Center in Tennessee to complete the process. Every student has to show either a birth certificate or valid passport. Most of the time the state requires a birth certificate from the state where you were born. If you have lost your birth certificate go to your local health department and get the short form birth certificate which does work with the state. Anyone with an honorable discharge DD214 from the military, the state also accepts that. A few years back once you completed the course and went to the driver license station, it would take 90 to 120 days to get your permit in the mail. Today, once you take the course and go to the driver license station, most people are getting them back in about 10 days. It’s a lot faster process now,” said Caplinger.
For more information call Caplinger at 615-684-4812 or email Randyc6755@yahoo.com