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One of the users at The Firearm Blog has called the ATF and it seems like they have stopped processing all NFA paperwork as a result of the shutdown.

I called [the BATFE] today and Vicky (a pleasant sounding lady who answered the phone) said they have been affected by the government shutdown.  Staff furloughed, no applications are being processed, nor can they check status.  My Form 4 was sent in Feb 2013, so who knows when I’ll see it.

I guess the ATF is not an essential government function.

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  1. “shutdown”, of course, does not mean that exchange of firearms will not be regulated, that arrests of firearm owners will not occur, that non-victim related “gun criminals” will be let out of prison, or that the taxes used to fund these things will not be extracted.

    It means that they will continue to force people to do all the things they usually do, but with an even smaller percentage of (inefficient) services given back.

    Of course they won’t “let” you have weapons that you “don’t need”. (You know, since the budget is just soooo tight.)

  2. This is not quite true, unless it is a development within the last 8 hours. The ATF contracts out most of the form 1 and form 4 apps. Both the local dealers I have NFA items ordered with said they are still receiving approvals, although at a slower rate.

    • I spoke with them last week and got the same message from Vicky. They don’t contract any of the NFA process out to anyone, and as I last remember there are 9 NFA agents working on the entire workload. They have hired another 9 agents recently, at least that is what the last NFA agent I spoke with told me.

      • Well how about we just cancel those hires fire the other 9 working NFA agents and do away with the degrading of our constitutional rights….

    • This is unfortunately true. I am a class 2 SOT with pending transfers. The NFA branch has shut down the eForm system and ALL transfers have stopped. I received confirmation from a few of the distributors I work with…

      • Well that’s a huge bummer then, my first suppressor went pending march 1st and I was expecting it literally any day now.

      • This is correct. Local forum I’m on has corroborated this report.

        Were all mad about it but understand the reason.

        • The fact that the NFA unit should be funded better given the $200 stamps they receive revenue for, they shouldn’t be shut down. I bet the bastards are still cashing checks.

          • I know they don’t. I have said that in several posts. It goes to the general treasury. However, it is b.s. that a revenue generating unit (NFA) is shut down. That was my point. They make money on that unit. The fact is, these Bolshevik types look for any excuse to slow this process down and this was the golden apple for them.

        • Were all mad about it but understand the reason.

          Obama wanted to give every owner of NFA hardware a reason to show up at the polls on election day 2014?

        • How many NFA owners would have voted for his party in the first place? I’m sure there’s a few out there, but not enough to sway the electoral map.

  3. Contracts have continued to run as long as there was money already loaded against the contract. Once the money loaded against the contract is exhausted the contractors are sent home. It is, therefore, quite possible that the money loaded against the contract has recently been exhausted.

  4. The NSSF has been reporting that most of the ATF has been inoperative since the shutdown, and they have specifically called out the NFA branch as being a division that’s gone dark.

    What’s a couple-three more weeks on 9 months, right?

  5. So Congress is still getting paid because the 27th amendment doesn’t allow them to change their salary. How convenient they follow the constitution to the letter when it comes to their paycheck…yet by ATF not processing paperwork, your right to bear arms is being infringed, and OBVIOUS VIOLATION OF THE SECOND AMENDMENT. It’s too bad you need an army of lawyers with deep pockets to get to the Supreme Court to address rights violations…it should be simple and easy to bring every concern to the courts.

    This violation of rights will probably go unanswered. Our Constitution has become a joke.

    • I would argue that the true violation of rights DID go unanswered, back in 1934 when it was first violated by the NFA.

    • I have no problem with congress getting paid during a shutdown. I don’t buy the meme that “they are not doing their jobs.” It is not their job to spend money we don’t have. They’ve effected a 17% budget cut; they should get a bonus. Hell, let’s tell congress that if they balance the budget we’ll give them a bigger bonus–let them keep .01% of every dollar they cut–when you’re talking trillions that becomes real money fast.

      • They’re not doing their jobs because they are abusing procedural rules to prevent proper functioning of the republican form of government (you know, the one where decisions are made by a majority vote in two houses of the parliament and signed by the president). And in some cases they even specifically create new procedural rules for the sole purpose of throwing the wrench in the works.

    • NFA items are not in the constitution. If you believe they are, then the violation did indeed take place a long time ago.

      • Many here are comfortable drawing a line between ‘arms’ and ‘ordinance,’ and the idea that the 2A does not in all cases cover the latter. If you take this to be true, then most NFA items are ‘arms,’ and therefore should be covered by the NFA, and the violation did take place a long time ago.

        The Constitution makes no mention of the people’s right to keep and bear arms except muskets with too short of a barrel, or powder horns with too great a capacity. Not sure if the Texas Longhorn steer was around back then, maybe it would have sparked some debate over “you can have a Longhorn derived powder flask, but we’ll tar and feather you if put more than the legal amount of powder in it.”

        I don’t think you’re trying to make a case to support the NFA and associated laws here, just laying out why I think the classic arguments used by others are invalid.

        • If the 2nd Amendment only protects muskets…then the 1st Amendment doesn’t protect speech on the telephone or the internet, religions such as Scientology or Mormonism, and the the 4th Amendment doesn’t protect your car, your computer, your email, or your cell phone.

        • Yes, this is exactly what I meant, just like “freedom of the press” does not only mean news organizations publishing on manual cranked printing presses. Although the Federal Government seems to think 4A does not apply to email. I disagree with them on that.

      • Actually, the reason why NFA introduced a (very hefty at the time) tax on regulated items, as opposed to an outright ban, is precisely because they are covered by the Constitution – and this was back in the day when you couldn’t creatively twist and reinterpret it quite as easily as today.

        • And this was verified by the 1939 SCOTUS ruling. They said that sawed off shotguns were not allowed because they had no “practical purpose” to the military. Of course they never say a demo on the Serbu Shorty.

    • Stabilizing braces are already selling like hot cakes, at least from what I’ve heard from my local gun store owner.

  6. Does that mean we can build our own suppressors and they won’t have the money to chase us down? No… they have the money to oppress, but funds for liberty are stretched thin.

  7. The problem is that the jack-booted Bolsheviks put the $200 in the general treasury fund instead of keeping it within the NFA program. That is probably where the money came from for the EBT spending spree.

  8. You could make a case that since the NFA branch has become derelict in their duty to collect the taxes, you have no obligation to pay them. They don’t actually have the right to DENY you a NFA transfer without cause and last time I checked “we’re not doing our jobs” is not cause.

  9. If Congress could’ve gotten its crap together and actually passed a budget we wouldn’t be HAVING this problem.

    • If there wasn’t an unconstitutional NFA limitation on barrels and silencers and etc, this wouldn’t be a problem.
      Repeal the NFA! Let all law abiding citizens possess what they want!

      • How are you going to know they’re law-abiding without a comprehensive background check? When some talk UBC, some gun owners squeal like a calf being gelded.

  10. Only took 15 days to notice this? I actually talked to them the week prior and they said that on 1 Oct the examiners will be furloughed and that there will be three people in the office to answer the phones. Nothing processing. Anything a dealer is seeing show up will stop here shortly as the approved stack is whittled down and mailed out by the admin assistants (the three answering phones). eForms was taken offline last week…I guess when someone noticed that there were still uploads happening, yet a majority of the ATF website is not displaying the “shutdown” notice that other govt sites are…selective outages.

    BTW, the law calls them silencers or mufflers. Industry created suppressor to remove the stigma and to shut up the “it doesn’t silence the gun” nazis 🙂 .

  11. Is the 90 day comment period on proposed changes regarding NFA Trusts suspended? Or is that clock ticking while we serfs are powerless to submit our forms ahead of the changes.

    The transfer to my local NFA dealer is furloughed so I can’t submit my form and trust before the proposed changes could go into effect.

  12. I believe this to be a lie. With only some 17% of the government actually shut down this is more likely the result the “make it hurt” campaign being conducted by this administration. Something akin to the ordering of park rangers to render facilities unusable – things like removing the tap handles and chaining toilets shut etc… Its an effort to punish what they see as the opposition’s base for GOP insolence.

  13. Immediate disbanding of the NFA branch. If processing forms to allow citizens to exercise their constitutional RKBA is “non-essential” then that branch should not exist. Imemdiately repeal the NFA.

  14. I said it before and I’ll say it again. Our fundamental, inalienable right to keep and bear arms cannot depend on a government agency which can be defunded.

    I know, some people will say that only “NFA” items are affected and those are not essential. That argument aside, while defunding only affects those items this time, it could affect all items next time.

  15. The only down side to the shut down that I was worried about was the NFA paperwork that I have been waiting on. It was due to show the same week as the shutdown started…. It is still not here. I figured those (explicit words) that can go and burn in hell were using this to further Infringe my Rights.

    Suppressors are easy to make like full autos… just the accuracy and quietness are not as good. My (to be) suppressor has a cool quick connect/disconnect feature… 🙁 it is not here yet and still have no .22lr ammo to shoot with it….

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