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Chief Law Enforcement Officer Certification To Be Removed From National Firearms Act Transfers

Tuesday, January 5th, 2016

Yesterday, the BATFE issued their ruling on the so-called 41P Notice of Proposed Rule Making regarding NFA transfers. Timing of the release was critical to ensure it was ready for President Obama’s announcement today of anti-2A Executive Action. 

I was up into the wee hours reading this 248 page ruling. I was also on the phone with the ASA so kudos to them for getting this together. While the dreaded CLEO signature is indeed gone, it’s bittersweet. Corporations which own NFA items in particular are going to have a rough time dealing with the new regulatory requirements. And, use of a trust will become equally painful. Additionally, I’m not comvinced the change in the CLEO’s role in this process is enough to prevent reluctant CLEO’s from holding up transfers. At any rate, I expect this to cuase a panic buy of NFA items as we have 180 days from the time this change is published in the Federal Register until it takes effect.


I urge you to read the entire ruling because it references the thousands of comments the government received when it opened the proposed rule change up. www.atf.gov/file/100896/download

Written by ASA on January 5, 2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Monday, January 4th, the Obama administration issued the final rule for Docket No. ATF 41P, the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) published on September 9th, 2013. The final rule has multiple provisions, most notably the elimination of the CLEO certification requirement for all NFA applications. The NPRM initially sought to amend the making and transfer process for National Firearms Act (NFA) firearms by extending the Chief Law Enforcement Officer (CLEO) certification requirement for all NFA transfers to private persons, including those conducted by a trust or legal entity. Had this measure been enacted as drafted, it would have resulted in widespread de facto bans of NFA items in jurisdictions where CLEOs refuse to sign applications. To prevent this scenario, the American Suppressor Association (ASA) rallied the suppressor community by leading the charge to submit comments in opposition to the proposed rule. In all, over 9,500 comments were submitted to the Federal Register, virtually all of which opposed the proposal to expand CLEO certifications.

“Since the announcement of ATF 41P, the American Suppressor Association has spearheaded efforts alongside partner organizations on the State and Federal levels to block the expansion of CLEO certification requirements,” said Knox Williams, President and Executive Director of the ASA. “For the first time in 82 years, local law enforcement will no longer have de facto veto power over any NFA applications. While their inclusion in the process made sense in 1934, before background checks, or even computers existed, the removal of this antiquated measure from the NFA process is a major victory for the suppressor and NFA communities.”

In addition to removing the CLEO certification requirement, the rule creates a mandatory CLEO notification process, and establishes a definition for the term “responsible person” in relation to NFA trusts and legal entities. It also requires that the trust or legal entity provide complete proof of existence, and that all responsible persons associated with the trust or entity submit photos and fingerprint cards with each NFA application, unless the applicant entity has had an application approved within the past two years, and has had no change in structure or personnel. The final rule will not apply to pending or previously approved applications, and is set to take effect 180 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This will occur on or near July 2nd, 2016.

Although the elimination of the CLEO certification requirement is a victory for the suppressor community, the ASA still believes that suppressors should be removed entirely from the NFA. To accomplish this goal, we are working closely with Rep. Matt Salmon (AZ-05) to pass the Hearing Protection Act (H.R. 3799, S. 2236). The HPA will remove suppressors from the onerous requirements of the NFA, and instead require purchasers to pass an instant NICS check, the same background check that is used during the sale of long guns. In doing so, law-abiding citizens will remain free to purchase suppressors, while prohibited persons will continue to be barred from purchasing or possessing these accessories. To contact your legislators in support of the HPA, please visit our Hearing Protection Act legislative contact form.

www.americansuppressorassociation.com

What President Obama’s Anti-Gun Executive Actions Will Look Like

Tuesday, January 5th, 2016

These are the executive actions President Obama plans to announce on the morning of Tuesday, 5 January, 2016 to “reduce gun violence and make our communities safer.”  

Just a couple of comments off the top of my head.  

Despite rumors that an actual number of transactions was going to be adopted to define “engaged in the business” of selling firearms, President Obama didn’t do it.  So nothing materially changes.  Status Quo.  Instead, it’s just a short lived opportunity for rhetoric.  This was supposed to be his anchor; closing that mythical “gun show loophole” and he couldn’t even make that happen.  With one exception (see below), this whole package doesn’t do anything.

Looks like they are going to push 41P through; an interesting new take on the White House as “trust buster.”  Considering the sheer number of trusts in the United States that concern all sorts of business (aside from owning NFA weapons) and how this precedent will affect those, I’m still unsure whether this new intrusiveness is even legal.  But I’m not a lawyer.  

Additionally, I’d hate to see be the guy who has to write those reports on how the government is going to pour money into “smart” gun technology.  Of course, a smart PM can always figure out a way to make an earmark useful.  

  

  
  

Data source: White House 

Democrats Are After Your Guns Again – The Assault Weapons Ban Of 2015

Saturday, December 26th, 2015

Never mind that they tried this once before and it not only didn’t work but cost them a majority in the Congress. Never mind that prohibitions don’t work. Never mind that the majority of Americans don’t want this. Democrats in the House of Representatives  have introduced a new bill to make the guns many SSD readers own, illegal to manufacture.  Naturally, the bill also covers ‘large capacity ammunition feeding devices’.

One of the things that always strikes me about these bills as they pop up is the obsession the anti-2Aers have with guns.  They love to make lists of types of firearms, the ‘good’ and the ‘bad’.  It’s really kind of creepy.  If only they put that kind of effort into cutting red tape so businesses could create jobs.  

I encourage you to read the full text of this bill that is currently in committee.

www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/4269/text

Virginia Announces Changes to Concealed Carry Weapon Reciprocity and Recognition

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015

The Virginia State Police released this announcement yesterday. It is very important for those visiting the Commonwealth of Virginia who previously enjoyed reciprocity for their CCW permit. The action was taken at the direction of Virginia’s Attorney General, Mark R. Herring, who had the VSP review concealed carry rules in each of the states that currently have reciprocity agreements with Virginia.  Likewise, Virginians will need to pursue alternative CCW licensing from other states such as Utah or Florida which offer non-resident options, if they plan to carry while in other jurisdictions where it is legal.

This is the second firearms restrictive executive action taken by Democrat Governor Terry McAuliffe’s administration.  The previous move prevents open carry of firearms by non-LE in Executive branch agencies and buildings.  

 

Legal review conducted in 2015 pursuant to § 18.2-308.014 of the Code of Virginia identified several jurisdictions that currently fail to meet the statutory requirements for recognition of the concealed carry permits they issue. As a result of that review, effective February 1, 2016, concealed carry permits issued by the following jurisdictions are NO LONGER VALID in Virginia:

Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
Delaware
Florida
Idaho
Indiana
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Minnesota
Mississippi
Montana
Nebraska
New Mexico
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Pennsylvania
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Washington
Wisconsin
Wyoming

As a result of this revocation of recognition Virginia concealed carry permits may no longer be valid in the jurisdictions listed above. Permit holders should, prior to travel, contact each jurisdiction to determine if their permit will be recognized prior to carrying concealed in that jurisdiction.

According to the legal review conducted by the Attorney General’s Office, certain states will no longer recognize Virginia concealed handgun permits because Virginia no longer recognizes that jurisdiction’s concealed handgun permit. These states are:

Florida
Louisiana
North Dakota
Pennsylvania
South Carolina
Wyoming

Virginia extends reciprocity or recognition to citizens holding both resident and non-resident permits/licenses from the following jurisdictions as set forth below:

Listing of states with which Virginia has Reciprocity Agreements (A formal written agreement exists between the two jurisdictions):

Texas
West Virginia

Listing of states with which Virginia has mutual recognition (Jurisdictions have informally agreed to honor permits issued by the other):

Michigan
Utah
Oklahoma

Virginia non-resident permit holders

Virginia non-resident permit holders should contact each jurisdiction to determine if their permit will be recognized prior to carrying in that jurisdiction.

www.vsp.virginia.gov/Firearms_Reciprocity

ATF Goes All #Mythbusters

Thursday, December 10th, 2015

 

www.atf.gov/resource-center

2016 NDAA Contains Provision To Offer 100,000 M1911A1 Pistols Via Civilian Marksmanship Program

Monday, November 30th, 2015

The day before Thanksgiving, President Obama signed the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act into law.  While one of its most sweeping changes is the creation of a new retirement plan for military personnel, an interesting provision in the legislation which will transfer up to 100,000 M-1911A1 pistols to qualified recipients via the Civilian Marksmanship Program.  Previously, CMP has been limited to transferring rifles such as the M-1 Garand.

  
The program will begin with a one-year pilot effort which will transfer up to 10,000 pistols.  Further details are below.  

SEC. 1087. TRANSFER OF SURPLUS FIREARMS TO CORPORATION FOR

(a) AUTHORIZATION OF TRANSFER OF SURPLUS FIREARMS TO CORPORATION FOR THE PROMOTION OF RIFLE PRACTICE AND FIRE- ARMS SAFETY.— (1) IN GENERAL.—Section 40728 of title 36, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

THE PROMOTION OF RIFLE PRACTICE AND FIREARMS SAFETY.

S. 1356—288

‘‘(h) AUTHORIZED TRANSFERS.—(1) Subject to paragraph (2), the Secretary may transfer to the corporation, in accordance with the procedure prescribed in this subchapter, surplus caliber .45 M1911/M1911A1 pistols and spare parts and related accessories for those pistols that, on the date of the enactment of this subsection, are under the control of the Secretary and are surplus to the require-ments of the Department of the Army, and such material as may be recovered by the Secretary pursuant to section 40728A(a) of this title. The Secretary shall determine a reasonable schedule for the transfer of such surplus pistols.

‘‘(2) The Secretary may not transfer more than 10,000 surplus caliber .45 M1911/M1911A1 pistols to the corporation during any year and may only transfer such pistols as long as pistols described in paragraph (1) remain available for transfer.’’.

(2) TECHNICAL AND CONFORMING AMENDMENTS.—Such title is further amended—

(A) in section 40728A—

(i) by striking ‘‘rifles’’ each place it appears and inserting ‘‘surplus firearms’’; and

(ii) in subsection (a), by striking ‘‘section 40731(a)’’ and inserting ‘‘section 40732(a)’’; (B) in section 40729(a)—

(i) in paragraph (1), by striking ‘‘section 40728(a)’’ and inserting ‘‘subsections (a) and (h) of section 40728’’; (ii) in paragraph (2), by striking ‘‘40728(a)’’ and inserting ‘‘subsections (a) and (h) of section 40728’’; and

(iii) in paragraph (4), by inserting ‘‘and caliber .45 M1911/M1911A1 surplus pistols’’ after ‘‘caliber .30 and caliber .22 rimfire rifles’’;

(C) in section 40732—

(i) by striking ‘‘caliber .22 rimfire and caliber .30 surplus rifles’’ both places it appears and inserting ‘‘surplus caliber .22 rimfire rifles, caliber .30 surplus rifles, and caliber .45 M1911/M1911A1 surplus pistols’’; and

(ii) in subsection (b), by striking ‘‘is over 18 years of age’’ and inserting ‘‘is legally of age’’; and (D) in section 40733—

(i) by striking ‘‘Section 922(a)(1)-(3) and (5)’’ and inserting ‘‘(a) IN GENERAL.—Except as provided in sub-section (b), section 922(a)(1)-(3) and (5)’’; and

(ii) by adding at the end the following new sub-

section: ‘‘(b) EXCEPTION.—With respect to firearms other than caliber .22 rimfire and caliber .30 rifles, the corporation shall obtain a license as a dealer in firearms and abide by all requirements imposed on persons licensed under chapter 44 of title 18, including maintaining acquisition and disposition records, and conducting background checks.’’.

(b) PILOT PROGRAM.—

(1) ONE-YEAR AUTHORITY.—The Secretary of the Army may carry out a one-year pilot program under which the Secretary may transfer to the Corporation for the Promotion of Rifle Practice and Firearms Safety not more than 10,000 firearms described in paragraph (2).

S. 1356—289

(2) FIREARMS DESCRIBED.—The firearms described in this paragraph are surplus caliber .45 M1911/M1911A1 pistols and spare parts and related accessories for those pistols that, on the date of the enactment of this section, are under the control of the Secretary and are surplus to the requirements of the Department of the Army.

(3) TRANSFER REQUIREMENTS.—Transfers of surplus caliber .45 M1911/M1911A1 pistols from the Army to the Corporation under the pilot program shall be made in accordance with subchapter II of chapter 407 of title 36, United States Code.

(4) REPORTS TO CONGRESS.—the Secretary initiates the pilot program under this sub-section, the Secretary shall submit to Congress an interim report on the pilot program. Secretary completes the pilot program under this sub-section, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a final report on the pilot program. this subsection shall include, for the period covered by the report—

(A) INTERIM REPORT.—Not later than 90 days after
(B) FINAL REPORT.—Not later than 15 days after the
(C) CONTENTS OF REPORT.—Each report required by
(i) the number of firearms described in subsection
(a)(2) transferred under the pilot program; and
(ii) information on any crimes committed using firearms transferred under the pilot program.
(c) LIMITATION ON TRANSFER OF SURPLUS CALIBER .45 M1911/M1911A1 PISTOLS.—The Secretary may not transfer firearms described in subsection (b)(2) under subchapter II of chapter 407 of title 36, United States Code, until the date that is 60 days after the date of the submittal of the final report required under subsection (b)(4)(B).

Additionally, the law requires the Department of Defense to develop procedures allowing military personnel to carry personally owned firearms on base, pursuant to local laws.

Mudge Smash Monday

Monday, November 30th, 2015

Anytime someone gets under the skin of the anti-2A movement, I smile.  

  

Well done Mudge, well done…

ASA Announces Hearing Protection Act: A Bill To Remove Suppressors From The NFA

Friday, October 23rd, 2015

For too long we’ve seen legislation move closer and closer toward banning firearms.  It’s great to see the American Suppressor Association take the opposite tack and move the goal posts toward less regulation.  In particular, the classification of suppressors as NFA items is particularly shortsighted considering their value in protecting the hearing of gun owners and bystanders alike.  And let’s not forget our pets and working animals who may be exposed to shooting.  

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The American Suppressor Association (ASA) is pleased to announce the introduction of the Hearing Protection Act (HPA) by Rep. Matt Salmon (AZ-05). This historic piece of legislation will remove suppressors from the purview of the National Firearms Act (NFA), replacing the antiquated federal transfer process with an instantaneous NICS background check. The HPA also includes a provision to refund the $200 transfer tax to applicants who purchase a suppressor after October 22, 2015.

“The American Suppressor Association believes that citizens should not have to pay a tax to protect their hearing while exercising their Second Amendment rights,” said Knox Williams, President and Executive Director of the ASA. “The removal of suppressors from the National Firearms Act has been our ultimate goal since day one. For months, we have worked alongside Rep. Salmon’s office and the National Rifle Association to craft this legislation. Although we recognize that introducing this bill is the first step in what will be a lengthy process to change federal law, we look forward to working with Rep. Salmon and the NRA to advance and ultimately enact this common-sense legislation.”

Also known as silencers, suppressors are the hearing protection of the 21st century sportsman. Despite common Hollywood-based misconceptions, the laws of physics dictate that no suppressor will ever be able to render gunfire silent. Suppressors are simply mufflers for firearms, which function by trapping the expanding gasses at the muzzle, allowing them to slowly cool in a controlled environment. On average, suppressors reduce the noise of a gunshot by 20 – 35 decibels (dB), roughly the same sound reduction as earplugs or earmuffs. In addition to hearing protection, suppressors also mitigate noise complaints from those who live near shooting ranges and hunting lands.

Unfortunately, suppressors have been federally regulated since the passage of the National Firearms Act of 1934. The NFA regulates the transfer and possession of certain types of firearms and devices, including suppressors. Currently, prospective buyers must send in a Form 4 application to the ATF, pay a $200 transfer tax per suppressor, undergo the same background check that is required to purchase a machine gun, and wait months for the ATF to process and approve the paperwork. In stark contrast, many countries in Europe place no regulations on their purchase, possession, or use.

Rep. Salmon’s Hearing Protection Act will fix the flawed federal treatment of suppressors, making it easier for hunters and sportsmen to protect their hearing in the 41 states where private suppressor ownership is currently legal, and the 37 states where hunting with a suppressor is legal. This legislation will remove suppressors from the onerous requirements of the NFA, and instead require purchasers to pass an instant NICS check, the same background check that is used during the sale of long guns. In doing so, law-abiding citizens will remain free to purchase suppressors, while prohibited persons will continue to be barred from purchasing or possessing these accessories.

www.AmericanSuppressorAssociation.com