Gun permit bills head to Jindal's desk

Bills are on the way to Gov. Bobby Jindal’s desk that would make it a crime to make public the names of people who applied for or received concealed handgun permits — one dealing with state-issued authorizations, the other with permits issued by sheriffs.

Jindal’s office indicated Thursday that the governor would sign the legislation into law.

House Bill 98 deals with those issued by sheriffs. HB98 also allows a sheriff to enter into an agreement with a sheriff of contiguous parish to issue concealed handgun permits, which are valid in both parishes.

House Bill 8 deals with state issued permits. Under current law, concealed handgun permit information is not a public record.

State Rep. Jeff Thompson, R-Bossier City and sponsor of both measures, said penalties for non-compliance are needed to protect the sensitive information from being released.

Penalties would be the same under each bill. The intentional release of the information by anyone in law enforcement or working for the state agency handling the permits would be subject to a fine of up to $500, not more than six months in jail or both. Any other person who intentionally makes the information public “shall be fined $10,000” and may be imprisoned for not more than six months, or both.

There are a few exceptions including if a court orders the information’s release, if the permit holder is charge with the felony offense or if the permit holder either agrees to the information’s release or the permit holder or applicant has made the information public.

Approval came Thursday as the Legislature signed off on conference committee reports settling differences between the House and Senate on the measure.