On July 9, 2013, Public Act 98-63, the Firearm Concealed Carry Act, became state law. This law requires an Illinois Concealed Carry License to carry a concealed firearm in Illinois. The full statute (430 ILCS 66) may be viewed on the Illinois General Assembly website.
Persons who carry firearms without a Concealed Carry License issued by the Illinois State Police are subject to arrest. Furthermore, Forest Preserve District of Will County law enforcement officers may issue citations to concealed carry licensees under the Act, in the event of a violation. The Forest Preserve District of Will County is committed to public safety.
Answers provided to the following questions are meant only to give general guidance. The answers do not and are not meant to replace statutory language. Please contact the District's Police Department at 815.727.8700 for further information.
Q: Are concealed carry permit (CCP) holders allowed to carry concealed firearms in the District's Visitor Centers?
No. According to the Illinois Firearm Concealed Carry Law, "a licensee under this Act shall not knowingly carry a firearm on or into any building or portion of a building under the control of a local unit of government." The District has clearly and conspicuously posted the Illinois State Police approved sign, in accordance with Firearm Concealed Carry Act, at all entrances of its buildings.
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms in the District's forest preserves or designated State Nature Preserves under Illinois' Firearm Concealed Carry Act?
Yes, but there are exclusions. Concealed carry is not allowed in Visitor Centers, at any public gathering or special event (unless the licensee is walking through the event to access his or her residence, place of business, or vehicle), at any public playground, or in any public park, athletic area, or athletic facility (unless the licensee is carrying a concealed firearm while on a trail or bikeway if only a portion of the trail or bikeway includes a public park.)
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms at the District's programs and events (this includes public programs, education programs, premier programs, and special events, as well as special events permitted by the District for other organizations, including day camps, camporees, and Klondike Derbys) where a special use/event permit is required?
No, but with exceptions. Firearms are not allowed at any public gathering or special event conducted on District property open to the public that requires issuance of a permit. Please note: All District-sponsored programs and events are open to the public and require a permit. However, the restriction against concealed carry at such events does not apply to a licensee who must walk through the event to access his or her residence, place of business, or vehicle.
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms at permitted private picnics?
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms at permitted private campouts?
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms in dog parks?
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms at playgrounds?
No. Firearms are not permitted at any public playground. The District offers playgrounds at two preserves: Hickory Creek Preserve - Hickory Creek Junction in Mokena and Theodore Marsh in Crest Hill.
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms in latrines?
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms in private watercraft launched on District fishing lakes?
Q: Are CCP holders allowed to carry concealed firearms in watercraft rented from Monee Reservoir?
Q: What should a member of the public do if he/she observes an individual with a firearm that is not concealed?
Call District law enforcement at 815.727.8700. A handgun carried on or about a person must be concealed from view of the public or on or about a person within a vehicle.
Q: Under what circumstances can a CCP holder discharge a firearm in a forest preserve?
The discharge of any firearm on District property is subject to all applicable State and Federal laws. The District prohibits the discharge of any firearm outside of those ranges and areas designated for firearms use by the Executive Director, and then only in accordance with the rules and restrictions for the proper use of such ranges or areas. The District also prohibits the discharge of any firearm that would result in the destruction or misuse of property and structures or natural resources, including plants and wildlife. (Please refer to the District's General Use Ordinance No. 124, Chapter II, Sections 1 and 2, and Chapter V, Section 5.)
If you have any additional questions, please contact the District's Police Department at 815.727.8700.