Illinois business owners weigh options on new conceal carry law - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Illinois business owners weigh options on new conceal carry law

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The new conceal carry law is forcing Illinois business owners to make some tough decisions as they decide whether to let people bring guns inside.

While many places like hospitals, schools, and bars are required to ban concealed guns, some business owners have already made up their mind. They will allow customers to bring guns into their store.

"With all the recent shootings, we want people to feel comfortable coming in to the store," Kelly Barry a manager at Mike's Pawn Shop in Quincy said.

Barry says the decision to allow concealed guns inside her store was a no brainer.

"It's a law for a reason, and we want people to be able to come to our shop, feel comfortable, and have their weapon and be able to protect themselves," Barry said.
   
In fact, Barry says the new concealed carry law won't change much for her customers.

"They bring firearms in to pawn, they bring firearms in to sell," Barry said. "We don't have an issue with conceal carry just as long as they are doing it properly."

Sheri Busse with Emerald City Jewelers in Quincy says, don't plan on seeing a sign banning guns posted in her store window either.
   
"We've built our business on trust," Busse said. "I think a sign like that says to our customers that we don't trust you with a gun in our store."
   
With plenty of expensive merchandise inside, Busse says the decision to allow guns wasn't an easy one. It was based on more than just personal opinion.

"I have to take in to account what my insurance will allow, and what my customers will bare," Busse said.

While both Busse and Barry admit allowing people to carry guns in their store is risky, they say allowing customers to exercise their rights is more important.

"We have elaborate security system and cameras. I feel we're protecting ourselves against anything that would happen in the store," Busse said.

"As long as they're carrying it properly, then we don't have a problem with them coming in," Barry said.

WGEM also spoke to numerous business owners who say they still haven't made up their mind either way yet.

The first concealed carry permits are expected to be issued at the latest, by early April.

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