- Associated Press - Thursday, January 5, 2017

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - Firearms enthusiasts are facing delays getting a new type of state concealed carry permit meant to speed up gun shopping, South Dakota authorities said Thursday.

The “gold card” law went into effect Sunday, but state and local authorities said that permits currently can’t be issued because required federal fingerprint background checks can’t be completed.

The new permit would allow customers to bypass a background check for each firearm purchase from a licensed dealer. Instead, shoppers would simply be able to present the permit, which requires completing the FBI fingerprint background check on top of the standard obligations necessary to get a concealed carry permit.

But those checks are stalled because South Dakota lacks a necessary FBI number for submitting fingerprints, Minnehaha County Sheriff Mike Milstead said. The state needs the identifier before the permits can get issued, Attorney General Marty Jackley said.

An FBI spokesman said in an email that South Dakota’s request is under review and that the state Division of Criminal Investigation will be informed through an official letter once a determination has been made.

In order for permit holders to avoid background checks at the store, the permit also needs approval from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. An ATF spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from The Associated Press.

South Dakota would join more than two dozen states with such an option if it is approved. The bill creating the gold card permit sailed through the Legislature during the 2016 session with only one vote against it.

Republican Rep. Mark Mickelson, the measure’s main sponsor, said he’s optimistic the issues will be resolved.

Milstead said his office received a significant number of phone calls earlier in the week about the new permit. For the most part, people have asked for a call back when the kinks are worked out.

“We’re all kind of holding our breath waiting for that number,” he said.

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