Still Waiting for Your Concealed Handgun License? DPS Says Be Patient

Some say it violates your constitutional rights, while others say it's just a matter of logistics... They're talking about the backlog of concealed handgun permits.

With record numbers of Texans buying guns in recent months, many of those new gun owners are now applying for concealed handgun licenses... And they're doing so at a rate that is making it hard for DPS headquarters in Austin to keep up. "I took the class back in February, early February." David Decker is still waiting for his concealed handgun license. "Close to five months." But he's waiting patiently, and refuses to point fingers at DPS. "It's all our faults for sending in so many applications. There's only so many people down there to take them."

Those applications are coming in at record rates... So far this year, more than 48,000 Texans have applied for a CHL. Compare that to the total of 62,000 in all of 2008. Those numbers mean the wait time for a CHL is going up.

DPS Trooper Gabriel Medrano says "Initially it was 10 weeks and now it's 16 weeks." While David patiently plays the waiting game, others say the backlog is uncalled for and residents should not be suffering because of the state's shortcomings.

Riverfields Owner David Rittenberry says, "I think they're a little frustrated. Panhandle Gun Slingers Owner Burnie Stokes says, "In order for them to keep it in their car or keep it on their persons, they are being denied their constitutional right or their state given right to do so. The state is supposed to take sixty days and it's been taken extremely too long."

Without out their CHL, gun owners cannot carry their weapon anywhere on themselves.

As for the reason behind the sudden surge of permit applications... DPS doesn't have an answer because they do not ask why on the application.