Highlights of proposed changes to Lowell’s Firearm Permiting Policy

In this weeks Council Packet there is information from Police Supt. Taylor on proposed changes to the Firearm permitting process. Here are the highlights.

From: William Taylor Superintendent of Police
Arthur Ryan, Jr. Deputy Superintendent
Re: New Policy of the City of Lowell Police Department Regarding Issuance of Licenses to Carry Firearms

As the licensing authority for the City of Lowell, the Lowell Police Department (LPD) has undertaken a review of the longstanding policy for issuing licenses to carry firearms. Early in the process it became apparent that our current policy was more than 30 years old and in need of modifications. The main objective of the review was to ensure that the policy adhered to the required regulations and constitutional guidelines.

The LPD and the City of Lowell Law Department conducted extensive research and had several discussions with other licensing authorities throughout the Commonwealth. Additionally, the LPD engaged in conversations with members of the community who had an interest in this policy. The modifications that were made to this policy take into consideration the research, policies of other licensing authorities and the opinion of community members. In summary, the new policy conforms to the necessary requirements while also keeping in mind the safety of the public.

Highlights of new policy include;
• Each application will be reviewed on an individual basis, prior policy did not allow for this which resulted in very few Unrestricted Licenses to Carry (LTC) being issued.

• Added for all LTC applications the successful completion of approved Safety Course including, “live fire”, component. Not required in prior policy.

• For Occupational and Unrestricted LTC’s, an advanced safety course above the basic level. This additional training course is required to demonstrate applicants possess the key components of “NRA Basics of Personal Protection outside the Home” or similar course. This is also a new requirement.

For applicants seeking an unrestricted LTC the following also apply
• Applicants must submit a written supplement providing reasons they believe support the granting of an unrestricted LTC and identify the proper purpose of the LTC.

• Applicants are asked to provide additional documentation which may assist in determining the applicant will not pose a threat to public safety. This is new the prior policy did not take the following examples into consideration. Examples include:
1. Current or prior military service
2. Current of prior law enforcement service
3. Prior receipt of an unrestricted LTC from another community or state, with no
4. Prior receipt of a “restricted” LTC from Lowell or other community, with no
5. Signed letters of recommendation that show the applicant’s good character and
emotional stability