SALT LAKE CITY -- The number of Utah Concealed Firearm Permits issued this year is expected to rise by 57,000 over last year, according to a report given to Utah's lawmakers Wednesday.
The Utah Bureau of Criminal Identification said more than 138,000 permits are projected to be obtained during 2013 in comparison to the 81,122 purchased in 2012.
"As of the first of August we have received 112,320 applications," said Alice Moffat with the BCI. "We are projecting during the calendar year of 2013 that we will receive about 138,720 applications."
The report also found that most of the permits requested are actually coming from people who live outside of the state of Utah. In the projections for this year, 70 percent of the applicants will come from outside of the state as Utah's permit is accepted in 35 other states as a legal document to allow a person to carry their firearm concealed.
Utah does benefit from the increase in permits purchased during the last year. Moffat reported that BCI will enjoy a $2.3 million surplus in their department thanks to the increase in sales. That led to a discussion among lawmakers that Utah may be charging too much for the permit and could look to lower the price.
Rep. Curt Oda, R-Clearfield, said he would prefer to see if the increased demand for permits continues for multiple years before tweaking the cost charged for the permit. Currently, Utah charges $46 for residents and $51 for non-residents to request a concealed weapons permit.