Having started the process a few years ago before I left to go elsewhere.
Bearing in mind that I already had a FOID Card and had been thru the handgun purchase process several times, and at that time was actually employed by a private detective agency... I walked into the police station and had a talk with the chief. Bear in mind that this was in one of the more rural areas of NJ.
Told him I wanted to apply for a CCW.
He literally laughed at me out loud.
Then handed me the application, fingerprint card, mental health release form, and told me to fill them out.
I did so and returned them.
He then informed me that he was going to forward the package to the superior court with the recommendation that my application be rejected by the Judge, and added that it was *his* (Police Chiefs) policy that in order to be recommended to the Judge for approval, all applicants needed to have gone thru a PTC Approved firearms training course.
So... I (obviously) asked what that was and where I could take it.
I then was informed that the PTC is the Police Training Commission, and PTC Courses are offered at the POLICE ACADEMY only to full entrants into the entire police academy course. Which, in NJ, means that you need to have been hired as a candidate officer by a PD in order to enter the course.
When I pointed this Catch-22 out, he smiled and said that in his opinion if anyone was going to carry a gun like a cop, they needed to be trained as well as a cop. This was his discretionary decision, allowable under state statute, and NOTHING could be done about it.
This, BTW, was about a month before he was himself shot at by a bad guy at a traffic stop, without injury, whereupon the bad guy drove off and was never caught. Maybe the PTC Course ain't so good...
or maybe it ought to include a bit more about giving chase to bad guys who shoot at cops...
"A police chief in Warren County exchanged gunfire Monday morning with the occupants of a car he had stopped to help. No injuries were reported. According to the Warren County prosecutor's office, Mansfield Township Police Chief Louis Esposito was on Valley Road at 7:25 a.m. when he came upon a white late-model Grand Prix with a darkened rear window and no license plate. The car was stopped in the middle of the road, facing west. Esposito, driving an unmarked car, turned on his grille lights and stopped to see if he could help whoever was in the car. Officials said that before Esposito got out of his car, a shot came from the passenger side of the Grand Prix."
He retired soon after.
So, with that said, I am not at all surprised at the low number of applications that people there actually submit. The entire process is hostile to the appplicant.
If the NJ Shooting Clubs wanted to make a statement, they would have arrange to have every single one of their members apply for a permit, so they could then demonstrate the 100% disapproval rate.