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December 17, 2012

Closer Look: Ill. faces hard choices with gun law

(Continued)

CHICAGO —

"It's a whole new ball game," Phelps said. "The court said there are no restrictions and all (a concealed carry law) had to be was reasonable."

He said last year's bill included prohibitions on carrying guns in places like schools, sporting events, churches, courthouses and police stations, but that list could be whittled down. He is against allowing guns at schools, and was even before the Connecticut shootings.

Phelps' new proposal likely would contain a provision requiring an applicant to undergo a background check. It also would require training for applicants before they are granted a permit, but perhaps not as extensive as the previous bill's call for an 8-hour training class from state police and both a written and shooting test.

"I'm sure some legislators are going to want 4-5 hours," he said. "Some may want 32 hours, but I doubt they'll get that."

One thing all sides likely will agree on is not letting the 180 days expire without doing something.

"This isn't a fiscal cliff, but it is a cliff," Phelps said

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