To the Editor:
In rebuttal to the letter from Judy Schuette last week, here are some facts worth reporting.
First off, I cannot issue handgun licenses to other Oregon county residents outside of Grant County. One must apply in the county of their residence.
Secondly, Oregon law requires a sheriff of a county to issue to their residents if they qualify. Sheriffs of Oregon may issue to nonresidents, if they choose to do so. Nonresident concealed handgun licenses are limited to four adjoining states. As for the law, Oregon requires a legitimate, demonstrated need to issue to nonresidents. That definition is not defined by law, but left to be interpreted by each sheriff.
You say you are no way against the right to legally carry a weapon. These folks are the law-abiding citizens who have every right to carry a gun regardless of where they live. They choose to get licensed so that they are legal. They already are gun owners prior to application, and are required to show competency in handgun safety. Criminal background checks are done.
Complete strangers? These people are still citizens of the United States and are constitutionally guaranteed the right to keep and bear arms whether you like it or not. They come to our community, stay in our motels, eat in our cafes, shop in our businesses and fly into our airport, and not once have I ever arrested one person for an outstanding warrant or one who shot up our community. These folks gave tens of thousands of dollars to our county coffers in revenues that they actually travel through other counties to get here. Because of this, we have obtained new technology at zero cost to our citizens in the form of a $13,000 donation for a digital fingerprint scanner.
So check your facts. I am seeking a fourth term, not a second term. In closing, I truly think that if the citizens of Grant County believed you and your diatribe, I wouldn’t be where I am today.