State bill significantly reducing training hours required for gun permits heads to governor's desk

SHELBY CO., Tenn. — A new state bill that significantly reduces the required training for a concealed carry only permit is heading to the governor’s desk.

This comes after an accidental shooting in Millington Tuesday night where an 8-year-old shot his mother after he got his hands on a gun that wasn’t secured.

The Millington Police Chief said this a reminder to gun owners to secure their weapons properly.

Before stepping foot in a gun range, Drill Sgt. Alverto Austin said his students learn how fire a laser gun.

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“Owning a firearm is a great responsibility and it should not be taken lightly,” said Austin, with Be Sober, Be Vigilant Protection Academy.

Austin said he’s concerned about a new state bill that changes the amount of training time to get a conceal carry-only weapon.

Currently, it’s a minimum of eight live firearm training hours. Under this bill, the training is slashed to 90 minutes of online training.

“How many people are just going to let it run and go back to the kitchen, or the living room or where the case may be? Who is going to police that to make sure they’re getting the adequate training that they need from a video?” questioned Austin.

He said another major lesson that may be lost online is the importance of properly securing a gun, especially if it’s left inside a car.

If the governor signs the new bill, Austin said it would have a negative impact on gun training schools, but his major concern is the negative impact on the community.

“We’re already fighting a very uphill battle when we talk about gun safety and adequate training. When you relax those standards, relax that education, it’s going to get worse,” said Austin.

FOX13 reached out to Gov. Bill Lee’s office for a comment for this story but we didn’t get a response.