If someone wants to carry a hand gun legally in Connecticut, they need to apply for a pistol permit from local police departments. If police deny or revoke that permit, people can go before an appeals board, which has the power to override the police decision.
The Connecticut Board of Firearms Permit Examiners receives more than 100 appeals per year. Of the cases they heard in 2012, more than half of them resulted in the board overriding police.
The board has gotten the attention of lawmakers recently, for two reasons. After the Newtown School Shooting, the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association called on lawmakers to get rid of the board, citing the high percentage of decisions it overturns. Supporters of the board have argued it was some police chiefs who didn't properly follow the law when it comes to pistol permits.
After debate, the General Assembly approved a law that took effect in July adding two new members to the board.
The board was thrust into the spotlight for another reason, after an incident earlier this year involving a woman with a gun at a family restaurant.