By Dan Eldridge
The atrocious package of legislation, aka ”Fix the FOID” proposed by Kathleen Willis will be heard Tuesday, May 21 at 8:30 AM in the House Judiciary-Criminal Committee. As of this writing, the amendment’s language has not been posted, but we have a good idea from drafts what will be included.
The tragic mass murder of five in Aurora, Illinois earlier this year has exactly nothing to do with law-abiding Illinois gun owners and everything to do with cascading failures by local, state, and federal government workers who failed use the tools they already have to keep firearms out of the hands of felons.
Rep. Willis’s response to government failure is: more government!
WHERE THE BALL WAS DROPPED:
- Federal 1: failure to ensure NICS background check data was comprehensive
- Federal 2: failure to prosecute perjury on 4473 form
- State 1: (Mississippi): failure to report felony conviction by this offender to NICS
- State 2: (Illinois): failure to prosecute perjury on FOID application by this offender
- State 3: (Illinois): failure to prosecute perjury on CCL application by this offender
- Local 1: (Oswego): state’s attorney failed to query for firearms when offender bonded out on another charge
- Local 2: (City of Aurora): failed to follow-up on Illinois State Police FOID and CCW revocation
These are all felonies that could have been reported to the State’s Attorney’s office for warrants and prosecution, but they weren’t. So let’s punish law-abiding gun owners to cure government failure?
WHAT’S IN THIS AMENDMENT:
Raise the state fee for a FOID card by 1,000%
- FOID card goes to $50 / 5 years, from current $10 / 10 years.
- Illinois State Police can charge for the background check ($30),
- Fingerprints would be required with every application if not supplied before ($75)
- Presto: A $205 FOID every 10 years.
You May Not Loan A Firearm
- Unless you are present at all times with the borrower, you may not lend a gun to anyone.
- No big deal? Consider these scenarios:
- Your son or daughter wishes to borrow your rifle for a competition. Sorry, no way.
- Your friend wishes to borrow your sweet Weatherby rifle for an elk hunt. Too bad.
- A friend asks you to take a gun to the gunsmith for him. Nope.
No More Private, face-to-face firearms transfers
- All transfers must go through an FFL.
- Transfer fees capped at $10
I won’t willingly do a $10 transfer; it is a money loser and an un-compensated risk to my license as an FFL.
Will the state compel all FFL’s to do these $10 transfers? They may try, but consider that a) some shops will not do transfers of any kind currently, and b) an FFL can deny any sale at any time to anyone, as long as it’s not on the basis of racial/protected class discrimination.
So…say good bye to private firearms transfers.
WHAT SHOULD BE DONE
- Enforce (investigate, prosecute, and incarcerate) the existing laws.
- Put some liability back on business or property owners who post property as CCW-prohibited when not required to by statute. The Aurora location was posted no-carry, leaving the law-abiding citizens disarmed and the criminal with evil intent free to commit multiple murders.
- Stop wasting scarce law enforcement resources on law-abiding citizens.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
- Contact your legislator.
- File a witness slip OPPOSING HCA-1 here.
- Support your FFL and their association. FFL-IL will be in Springfield tomorrow to oppose this mess with boots on the ground.
Dan Eldridge is President of Federal Firearms Licensees of Illinois and owner of Maxon Shooter’s Supplies in Des Plaines, Illinois.