Last week, I gave an outline of the Illinois State Police (ISP) bill SB2889. That bill number is now going to be SB1165. That is the way the ISP believes is the best way to clean up the FOID card mess. Below is an outline of HB3245 being proposed by Representative Kathleen Willis. The Illinois Senate version is SB568, sponsored by Ram Villivalam. HB3245 and SB568 are essentially redoes of the now defunct SB1966 from the 101st General Assembly. We are now in the 102nd General Assembly.
For the record, the ISRA does not like the FOID card but it is the law in Illinois and it has to be reckoned with whether we like it or not. The ISRA has to deal with the world as it is, not as we would like to be. In the future I am sure we will be looking toward a lawsuit to test the constitutionality of the FOID card. Preparing a case to go all the way to the United States Supreme Court is not like making your morning Pop Tart. Last year, the United States Supreme Court turned down all 10 of the Second Amendment cases. Two of those were ISRA cases and one of those cases we had worked on for 13 years. Thousands of hours went into that case, as well as thousands of dollars, and we got nothing for it except a stack of bills. Taking Second Amendment cases to the United States Supreme Court is an expensive, time consuming, risky business. In the case of testing the constitutionality of the FOID card, the anti-gun side will try every possible delay they can think of to slow the case down. It could easily be 10 or more years before the case gets heard by the United States Supreme Court, if it gets heard at all. Even if the ISRA is successful, 30 or 40 percent of the present FOID card holders may be gone before the case is settled. That does not mean we are not going to move forward but that is the reality.
The ISRA has to secure Second Amendment Rights for as many people as possible which means we have to work in the present. We can’t wait forever for the whims of various courts. The ISRA takes this duty very seriously. Working with the General Assembly and the Illinois State Police are the only way to get that job done. Be mindful that attacks on our Second Amendment are going to continue, so while we are trying to secure more Second Amendment Rights, there will be continuous attacks on the rights we have now. Pressure is building on the General Assembly “to do something”. When any legislative body feels pressure and does something, it usually has disastrous unintended consequences that take years to undo if that ever happens.
Below is an analysis of what the anti-gun gun side is proposing. This is HB3245 and SB568. As you will see, it contains mandatory fingerprints and other onerous features that we want no part of. The Senate version of their bill has 25 sponsors so the fight is about to begin. It you read this and are not an ISRA member, please join. Please invite your friends relatives, shooting club members and anyone else you know to join.
Fix the FOID (SB568, SA#1/HB3245)
Prohibited Persons Portal:
- Portal of individuals, for use by law enforcement agencies, whose FOID card has been revoked or suspended. ISP shall indicate the reasons for the revocation or suspension and whether the person has surrendered their FOID card or filled out the Firearms Disposition record.
- The Portal will prioritize persons identified as a “Clear and Present Danger”.
Violent Crime Intelligence Task Force:
- Shall conduct enforcement operations against people that have had their FOID suspended or revoked and have not fulfilled the requirements of Section 9.5 of the FOID card act. The Task Force shall prioritize those that have been reported by members of the law enforcement community as a “Clear and Present Danger to themselves and others”.
- ISP may enter into intergovernmental agreements with other law enforcement agencies to complete the mission of the task force. These law enforcement agencies may apply for grants from the newly created State Police Revocation Enforcement Fund.
State Police Revocation Enforcement Fund:
- (DNR loses their original $6)
- New fund in the state treasury that may receive revenue from grants, donations, appropriations, and any other legal source.
- Fund may give grants to law enforcement agencies that participate in the Violent Crime Intelligence Task Force.
Mental Health Reporting Fund:
- Leftover money from this fund may be used as follows.
- 50% for community based mental health programs aimed at reducing violence
- 50% for National School Mental Health Curriculum model
- Mental Health Reporting Fund presently allows DHS to make grants for mental health programs with any surplus money.
ISRA Note: Vague, untested programs that may not produce any results
“Clear & Present Danger” definition expanded:
- “…including any act that is intended to cause or create a risk and does cause or create a risk of death or great bodily harm to one or more persons.”
ISRA Note – Huge expansion of the definition of Clear and Present danger when they add in the term “…any act.”
ISP FOID changes notification:
- ISP shall publish on website changes in this new act
- All FOID cards issued 180 days after the act shall receive notice of these changes
- Only shipped to address on FOID Card or CCL
- Only use US mail or private carrier authorized by federal law
Private Firearm Transfers:
ISRA Note: Limits access delivery for ammunition purchases
Shall use a Federal Firearm License dealer (FFL)
- FFL must take possession of firearm until all legal requirements for transfer are met
- FFL shall conduct all background checks including NICS
- If neither the seller/buyer pass a background check the FFL shall transfer the firearm to Law Enforcement
- FFL shall maintain all legal documentation subject to the Firearm Dealers License Certification Act
- FFL cannot charge more than $10 for the transfer and must have ISP approval
- Exemptions to this provision:
- Sales to law enforcement, corrections, active military
- Those acting on behalf of law enforcement
- Gunsmith conducting service or repair
- Persons acting on behalf of common carrier for storage or delivery
- Loaned firearm at a range
- Minor or others that are loaned a firearm for lawful hunting
- Transfer from family member at death
- Shall notify ISP of transfer within 60 days
- ISP shall conduct a NICS background check
- Person that transfers a firearm to law enforcement
- Bans private sales of firearms
- FFL’s can only charge $10
- have costs and liability to store weapons
- Potentially multiple background checks
- Shall maintain all documentation (for how long?)
- On error in background checks FFL forced to transfer firearm to law enforcement
Mandatory Fingerprinting FOID/CCL:
- Must use live scan print vendor licensed by Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
- Vendor shall not charge more than $30
- ISP shall charge a fee for a national criminal background check not to exceed actual cost
- ISP shall deny license to for failure to submit fingerprints
- May use previously supplied fingerprints for a CCL
- Mandatory fingerprinting for CCL’s
- Treated like a common criminal for access to a constitutional right
- Cost of fingerprinting is greater than $30, theft of services for fingerprinting vendor
Applications and Renewals:
- ISP must approve/deny all “COMPLETE” applications in 30 BUSINESS days
- Increase fee to $20 plus all applicable processing fees (not defined)
- $15 to Firearm Services Fund & $5 to State Police Revocation Enforcement Fund
- DNR loses funding from their original $6 per card fee
- All FOID cards are valid and renewed for 5 years not 10 years
- Existing FOIDs grandfathered for 10 years until first renewal then 5 years
- Allows ISP to delay application approval for several months for incomplete application
- FOID/CCL valid for 5 years not 10
- 300% increase in the FOID Card fee (Not including fingerprint cost and ISP charge)
- Assume $30 fingerprint + $25 ISP charge + $20 fee = $75 FOID card fee
- 1,400% Fee Increase!!!!!!
FOID Card administrative changes:
- People may opt into email notifications from ISP rather than regular mail
- Allows for a suspension of a FOID card.
- Allows for the cancellation of a FOID card instead of a revocation for those people that no longer qualify for a FOID. This is typical of a person moving out of state.
Firearm Disposition Records:
- Shall contain a signed statement from the Transferee to include:
- Knows the law, knows the penalties for violation of the law, will retain possession of firearms until Transferor is eligible or new transferee is found
- Courts may mandate transfer of firearms to law enforcement less than 48 hours
- ISP Enforcement Operations:
- ISP shall conduct enforcement operations against ineligible FOID card holders
- Emphasizing those that are a Clear and Present danger
- Increase penalty to Class A misdemeanor for failure to comply in 48 hours, Disposition Records
- Creates confusing and contradictory firearm disposition procedures for Courts and Law Enforcement to follow
- Penalty enhancement for failure to comply
Court mandated surrender of FOID and Firearms to Law enforcement:
- Upon felony conviction
- May petition the court for transfer under Firearm Dispositions section
- May not be in the same household
- Petition to court to transfer firearms to someone other than law enforcement is not guarantee
- No guarantee Courts, upon petition may release firearms from law enforcement
- SB568, SA#1/HB3245 sections are not subject to FOIA
- The State Police Revocation Enforcement Fund is not subject to chargebacks. (sweeps)
The number of members the ISRA has means a great deal to us. The more members we have, the more power we have to fight for your rights. For those who are members, thank you. For those who are not, you can join online.
I know many of you are concerned about the recent 9th Circuit ruling in the Young v. State of Hawaii lawsuit. The 9th Circuit has ruled that the Second Amendment does not protect open carry of weapons in public. In 2016, the 9th Circuit ruled in the Peruta v. County of San Diego that the Second Amendment does not protect the right of individuals to carry concealed weapons in public. The Peruta v. San Diego County was one of the cases turned down by the United States Supreme Court last year.
The Young v. State of Hawaii should also be headed to the United States Supreme Court. The 9th Circuit is the most overturned Circuit in the Country.
Pheasants Forever has published interesting but sad information on habitat. We are all aware of disappearing habitat throughout the Midwest. Illinois used to be known for pheasant and quail hunting. That has largely evaporated except for a few isolated spots where farmers have taken an interest in preserving prairie and woodland edge habitat. The numbers regarding disappearing habitat speak for themselves. Since 1966, quail habitat has declined 83% and pheasant habitat has declined 70%. In general, habitat for prairie birds (song birds) of all kinds has declined 53%. In the last 150 years, prairie grasslands have declined 95%. Not a very pretty picture.
Pheasants Forever has begun a fund project to save as much prairie grassland as possible and has an excellent record of spending money wisely. I am a long time member and have sent my donation, by the way.
April 1, 1563 -In 1563, the Council of Trent changed the first day of the year from April 1 to January 1. Soon April 1 became the butt of jokes. People were sent on fool’s errands and had “kick me signs” pinned to them. One April Fool’s Day, I announced one of our super aircraft carriers would be docking at one of the bridges in Peoria, Illinois. Totally impossible, of course, but people showed up to see it. By the way, your shoe is untied!
April 1, 1945 - United States troops land on Okinawa. It was one more step in the defeat of the Japanese Empire.
April 2, 1917 - President Woodrow Wilson asks Congress to declare war on Germany. There were many Germans living in the United States. My great-grandfather and grandmother were German. When war was declared, he called the family together and ordered them to not speak German any more. I am told that great-grandfather and great-grandmother didn’t speak German except when they argued.
April 3, 1860 - The Pony Express begins. A letter could be carried from St. Joseph, Missouri, to Sacramento, California, in 10 days. After the Transcontinental Railroad was completed
in 1869, that time was cut to four days. Since then, we have computerized the Post Office, added air mail and so we are back at 10 days again.
April 4, 1841 - President William Henry Harrison dies of pneumonia after 37 days in office. During his hour and forty minute inaugural address, he got so cold that he got sick, went to bed and died 37 days later.
April 5, 1792 - President George Washington exercises veto power for the first time.
April 6, 1832 - The Black Hawk War begins. Chief Black Hawk, a Sauk Indian, was born near present day Rock Island, Illinois. The constant encroachment of settlers on Indian lands that were supposed to be protected by treaties drove Chief Black Hawk to war. General Edmund P. Gaines arrived with United States troops. He was soon joined by Illinois Militia which included Captain Abraham Lincoln.
April 6, 1917 - Congress grants President Woodrow Wilson’s request and enters WWI. The United States became a player on the world stage.
April 8, 1805 - Lewis and Clark leave to explore the newly acquired land of the Louisiana Purchase. The United States paid seven cents an acre for it. Not a bad deal.
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Upcoming Events: ISRA Calendar
For more information, visit www.isra.org
Saturday, April 3, 2021
Range Work Day
Triple Threat Defense LLC: Defensive Tactics for Concealed Carry – Level 1
Saturday, April 4, 2021
ISRA Black Powder League (Bonfield Muzzle Loaders)
Paper & Steel Shotgun League
Tuesday, April 6 & 13, 2021
Tuesday Afternoon Indoor Air Gun Open Practice
ISRA Indoor Air Gun Open Practice
Wednesday, April 7 & 14, 2021
Combat Paper & Steel League
Saturday, April 10, 2021
Spring Fling Air Rifle Match
Saturday, April 17, 2021
Hard Dog Junior Team at the Range
Sunday, April 18, 2021
ISRA Bullseye Match
Joe Brown Highpower League/Joe Brown Match
Tuesday, April 20, 2021
Tuesday Night Irregular Rifle League
Wednesday, April 21, 2021
ISRA Benchrest League
Gun & Trade Shows
Gun & Knife Show – Chillicothe, IL
Chillicothe Sportsman Club
Dates: April 10 & 11, 2021
Hours: Saturday: 8:30-4:30
Crown Point Gun Show – Crown Point, IN
Lake County Fairground
Dates: April 10 & 11, 2021
Hours: Saturday: 9:00-5:00
Will County Gun Show – Peotone, IL
Will County Fairgrounds
Dates: April 17 & 18, 2021
Hours: Saturday: 8:00-3:00
McHenry County Gun Show – Woodstock, IL
McHenry County Fairgrounds
Date: April 18, 2021
Hours: Sunday: 8:00-1:00