The most common permit denial reason listed was due to being a current or former medical marijuana patient.

Firearm permit applications fell for the second straight year in Hawaii, while firearm registrations dropped for the first time since 2019, according to a report released by the state Attorney General’s Office.

Processed permit applications sank to 21,881 in 2022, a decrease of 6% from 2021. Total firearm registrations fell to 51,883, a drop of over 9% from 2021, the report said. The remainder of registrations came from imported firearms and transfers of firearms that were previously registered in Hawaii.

Applications and registrations have both more than doubled since 2000, when data first began being compiled. Imports have increased over 300% over that same time frame, according to the report, which was released this month.

The statewide application denial rate was 2.5%, continuing a decline from a 2.8%, the highest denial rate since 2000, it said. More than 40% of permit denials issued were due to an applicant being a current or former medical marijuana patient. According to the AG’s report, former patients can apply for firearm permits no less than one year after the expiration of their medical marijuana card.

Hawaii County had a denial rate of 6.2%, more than triple the denial rate of any other county. The highest county-level denial rate recorded since data began being collected was 6.3% in Hawaii County in 2020.

Hawaii County also had the highest relative permit application rate, accounting for 21% of applications despite having only 14% of the state’s population.

Of the total applications, roughly 54% were handguns and 46% were longarms, which are made up of rifles and shotguns. The denial rate for longarm permits was nearly 4%, more than double the denial rate for handgun permits.

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