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Digital-only application process riles some

Monday, Dec 16, 2013

* You’ll be able to begin the application process for a concealed carry permit with the Illinois State Police on January 5th, but only online. And that troubles some folks

“We want the ability to have a choice,” said state Rep. Brandon Phelps, a Harrisburg Democrat. “You’ve got people in some rural areas who don’t have access to computers or who might not understand the technology.”

But Illinois State Police officials say they’re not set up to process paper applications.

* More

Illinois State Police spokeswoman Monique Bond said there is no procedure in place for applicants to send in a paper application.

“At this time we will only be accepting applications online,” Bond said. “It is more efficient, cost-effective and easier for other agencies to communicate throughout the application process.”

While Phelps said he understands the state police reasoning and agrees a paper application could slow the approval process, he said the option should still be available for people who don’t have computers or Internet access.

“It’s a big deal that needs to be addressed,” Phelps said.

* More

National Rifle Association lobbyist Todd Vandermyde says he’s anxious the concealed carry rollout will mirror the Affordable Care Act signup mess. He’s pressing the state police to accept paper, as well as online, applications.

“There are people in this state who don’t have the ability to scan documents, who are over 55 and don’t live on a computer every day like the tech generation does,” he says. “We’re trying to make this reasonably accessible for everybody. But the state police seem to be in a very narrow mindset about that, and are trying to force everything in a digital model, which they don’t even seem to be able to get right.”

The story above also claims that this page isn’t working on some browsers. It didn’t work on one of my browsers last week, but it is working today. Does it work for you?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - walkinfool - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:23 am:

    Works for me.

    Share Phelp’s concerns. Perhaps they can say you can submit by paper, but on-line is the preferred method, and paper will certainly lead to long delays.

    Typical: pass a bill leading to giant loads on a state agency, without enough funds to increase their staff substantially.

  2. - Liberty First - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:23 am:

    Since people have to take classes, there is no reason for the state not to require trainers provide internet access for the application.

  3. - wordslinger - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:25 am:

    The state will take a paper check to process your application, just as it does for tax payments, fees, court settlements, etc. It will take your paper tax forms, too.

    Until the state doesn’t take your paper check, the ISP position is unsupportable. A paper application option needs to be allowed for the reasons stated above.

    Way to feed a new round of conspiracy theories, ISP.

  4. - Pete - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:25 am:

    Did I read that right?

    If I live in Illinois and I’ve been addicted to narcodicts, I can get a CC, but if I’m from Indiana then I’m out of luck?

  5. - A guy... - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:27 am:

    I’m not applying, but it seems to work on my browser if I wanted to continue. Everyone has access to a computer, even if they have to go to a library. They could probably even apply from a state office if a hardship is deemed great. This is cheaper and more efficient. If you want to conceal/carry (I support this enthusiastically), abide by the system. Everything new is paperless. Get over it.

  6. - Pete - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:27 am:

    In a more serious tone, can the State Police work with Universities and Libraries to help the elderly apply on-line? People can get help with tax forms and other governmental applications at those sites.

  7. - Ray del Camino - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:37 am:

    There are wide swaths of Southern Illinois without Internet access. Some of Phelps’ constituents would have to go a long way, even to find a Library with good Internet.

    Page worked just fine for me.

  8. - Nearly Normal - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:46 am:

    Page worked fine for me. Found out who in my county is a trainer for CC.

  9. - Tom - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:49 am:

    “There are wide swaths of Southern Illinois without Internet access.” Since when did southern Illinois become Siberia? People aren’t living in the stone age in southern Illinois.

  10. - Name Withheld - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 11:50 am:

    Has anyone tried it with a mobile device, like an iPad? Mobile devices are bit more locked down by the manufacturers. iPad, for example, doesn’t support Flash. The reason I ask is that older people are more likely to have an iPad or a Kindle or something with browser capability that isn’t a computer.

  11. - Southern Illinois - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:01 pm:

    The online process is like most things in life. If there is a will, there is a way. If someone wants a CC permit bad enough, they will figure it out.

  12. - PastorMike - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:03 pm:

    Worked fine for me…. almost.

    The link to “Illinois Digital ID website” gives me a JAVA error….

    Without that, you can’t sign in…

  13. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:14 pm:

    The Illinois Digital ID website works with Internet Explorer not Firefox.

  14. - Just Observing - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:21 pm:

    Worked for me.

  15. - Just Observing - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:22 pm:

    === Since people have to take classes, there is no reason for the state not to require trainers provide internet access for the application. ===

    Most places offering training will likely offer the ability to submit an electronic application… but for an added fee.

  16. - Judgment Day - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:30 pm:

    Initial page is in a .aspx format, which is a “.net” environment, so one would hope it would work with IE.

    Be interested to test it out using a couple of different tablets, using the iOS and Android operating systems.

  17. - Amalia - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:32 pm:

    access via Mac with Safari gets the page, but click to try and page says will be available post Jan 5, think it was 5. so, it’s sorta working.

    so much better to apply on line. faster, easier to correct mistakes. cannot believe that there are so many areas and people over 55 (way to stereotype) who don’t get service or do something on the Internet. visit a library much?

  18. - RetiredArmyMP - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:36 pm:

    -The link to “Illinois Digital ID website” gives me a JAVA error….-

    The site requires you to have the latest JAVA update, Version 7 Update 45, which was recently released. Go to to download and install the latest version.

  19. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:50 pm:

    I have been anxiously following this Act and waiting for CCW in Illinois for a long time. I’m glad the process will be electronic. It’s fast, simple and will only expedite the process. I secured my digital signature a few weeks ago. It’s painfully simple. I’m not trying to be rude but if you can’t figure this out, is your carrying a loaded gun in public a good idea? The excuses I’m hearing as to why paper applications should be used are scaring me

  20. - countyline - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:53 pm:

    More foot-dragging by the ISP - why would we expect anything different ?

    Its not just the application, there’s also a digital signature and photo that are required. The younger crowd and those who work with computers regularly won’t have a problem, but many, many people won’t have a clue how to manipulate those things.

  21. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:55 pm:

    I’m 35 and reading the comments about Java errors. Please. Don’t come to Libertyville with your gun. Again, all this tech talk is way over the heads of most people who want a gun and yet it’s their right. This will be the same people who will use split second judgement to use a firearm. Yikes! NRA is not helping!

  22. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 12:59 pm:

    Kudos to the ISP. It’s a good looking website. Yes, it may crash like the Lottery did. Then it gets improved and there are no problems. If this was a paper process, it would take way too long for you to get your license.

  23. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:05 pm:

    County line –is that the demographic you want carrying a gun in public?

  24. - countyline - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:09 pm:

    What does operating a computer have to do with handling a gun safely ? Nothing.

    I know people who have been around guns all their lives who I would trust with any type of weapon, anywhere, but they simply have no understanding of how computers work, nor do they care.

  25. - Rich Miller - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:11 pm:

    ===they simply have no understanding of how computers work===

    I don’t either. I turn my computer on and use it, pretty much like everybody else.

    Just sayin…

  26. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:15 pm:

    You can even check the status of your application and email notifications will be used!? The state is exceeding my expectations.

  27. - Fan - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:18 pm:

    Brilliant comments Nick (snark).

  28. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:20 pm:

    Fan- “Java” is not coffee in this case.

  29. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:24 pm:

    A Guy- A Men!

  30. - Chavez-respecting Obamist - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:36 pm:

    I’m over 55 and yet, I know how to use a computer. I have a vague idea of how they work, but I don’t really need to know that much. Kind of like how cars work–I get the internal combustion thing, but transmissions remain a mystery.

    If there really are huge parts of the state with no internet access, that’s a problem that needs to be addressed yesterday.

    I got it to work using Firefox.

  31. - Stephanie - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 1:57 pm:

    The Clinton County Concealed Carry Facebook page posted the following today:

    “Been hearing of success stories when using Windows XP, Internet Explorer 8 or 10 and updated Java.”

    A paper process would certainly be helpful for applicants, but in the event that doesn’t happen, most libraries have computers available, and librarians could offer assistance.

  32. - John Boch - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 2:02 pm:

    Nick Nack: It’s painfully simple. I’m not trying to be rude but if you can’t figure this out, is your carrying a loaded gun in public a good idea? The excuses I’m hearing as to why paper applications should be used are scaring me

    Nick: So, Nick, you mean this is kind of like a literacy/intelligence litmus test to carry a gun, right?

    While I imagine some folks might like that line of thinking, I personally don’t think limiting rights based upon I.Q.s is fair, equitable, or moral.


  33. - Nick nack - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 2:03 pm:

    John- Let me guess. You’re comparing this to Jim Crow, right?

  34. - A Citizen - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 2:12 pm:

    FYI - Computers work on smoke - - you let that out and poof, it’s all over.

  35. - SafeAggie - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 2:28 pm:

    The Illinois Digital ID website doesn’t work at all with my Chrome browser. It requires Internet Explorer 7.0 or above, according to the error message generated by the website.

  36. - FormerParatrooper - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 2:56 pm:

    I have had no issues getting to the page. And as a thought,my FFL was done all on paper, no issues.

  37. - Formerly Known As... - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 3:43 pm:

    Offering both digital and paper applications makes sense.

    Apparently too much sense for Illinois.

  38. - Formerly Known As... - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 4:09 pm:

    === “You’ve got people in some rural areas who don’t have access to computers or who might not understand the technology.” ===

    Newsflash: This problem is not limited to the rural parts of our state. Some urban neighborhoods have very slow connection speeds. 56K is “fast”, and broadband is but a dream. There are also urban residents who are not very familiar with “the technology”.

    In fact, some of our rural residents are among the most technologically adept and advanced. Have you seen the navigation and automation tech on some of this new farming equipment? It’s incredible.

    Technological literacy and access isn’t just a “rural” problem. There are reams of data on this.

  39. - A guy... - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 4:32 pm:

    You wanna lock and load, you gotta log in.

  40. - Demoralized - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 4:43 pm:

    Some people will never be satisfied. We need to be getting away from paper for everything and do stuff online. It is a more efficient process and I would think it would also speed up the processing times.

  41. - wordslinger - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 6:08 pm:

    Just as with voting, the idea is to make it as easy as possible for citizens to exercise their rights under the law without arbitrary impediments.

    The digital-only requirement qualifies as an arbitrary impediment.

    I can easily see how it how could create unnecessary difficulties for some. The object of the exercise isn’t to make it easy for ISP to process applications. It’s to allow citizens to enjoy equal access to the law.

    And in case anyone missed it, I wasn’t exactly a cheerleader for the new c-c law. But, as with voting, making it tough for some over others to exercise their rights is beyond the pale.

    The governor should make an executive decision to allow full and equal access.

  42. - Formerly Known As... - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 6:15 pm:

    === Jim Crow ===

    I give this the old eye-roll since it clearly does not rise to the level of Jim Crow laws. Few things could. It does, however, raise interesting parallels to the voter ID argument.

    If the courts view concealed carry as a fundamental “right”, then how can the state legitimately erect these additional hurdles and burdens that interfere with exercising that right?

    One must:
    Own a computer and pay for internet access or
    Spend the money and time it takes finding your way to a public area that offers free internet access

    You also must also possess
    a certain level of technological aptitude
    the ability to access that computer and your account more than once
    the means of travelling to that computer if you do not own one

    This could easily prove difficult from a financial perspective, a time perspective and a knowledge perspective. Especially when compared to the cost, time and knowledge required by an alternative such as calling the ISP, requesting an application and then mailing it back to them.

    That is similar to our arguments against photo ID requirements for exercising the right to vote, as securing that photo ID would be burdensome due to the cost, time, etc., involved.

    It would seem inconsistent to say that one case is OK but not the other.

  43. - Formerly Known As... - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 6:16 pm:

    @Wordslinger - I swear I didn’t see your post while drafting mine. Get out of my head! #SeeYouAround

  44. - countyline - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 6:26 pm:

    What they said ^

    On top of that, how much do you want to bet the ISP PRINTS all of these online applications ???

  45. - downstater - Monday, Dec 16, 13 @ 6:33 pm:

    Imagine the howls of protest if we made voting an electronic only exercise of our constitutional right? The libs would be lined up about how the poor minoritys don’t have access to cast their votes. But let it be said about older/downstate people without internet access and we are whiners.

    I guess asking people to get an ID to cast their vote is too much but if you want a CCW get ready to jump through the electronic hoops. Maybe we need a new entitlement program for internet access?

  46. - Juvenal - Tuesday, Dec 17, 13 @ 2:29 am:

    Government needs to be run less like a business!

  47. - John - Thursday, Dec 19, 13 @ 8:12 pm:

    “It’s a big deal that needs to be addressed,” Phelps said.

    You’ve got to give credit to Rep. Phelps, he knows what’s important to his voter base. He insisted on Duty to Inform in his carry bill, to buy off the prison/cop vote in Harrisburg. He put an UNLIMITED privacy waiver in the bill, and no one in southern Illinois has even begun to figure out the danger of that one yet.

    But the paper apps. are a big deal to get the herd of gun rubes packing before IGOLD.

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