Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN Legal & Legislation

Senate Judiciary Committee to Hold Hearing on S. 941 - the "Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Reform and Firearms Modernization Act"

Friday, September 10, 2010

This Tuesday, September 14, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on reforming current regulation of commerce in firearms -- especially in the area of dealer licensing and oversight -- by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE).

The hearing will focus on S. 941, the "Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Reform and Firearms Modernization Act" sponsored by Senators Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT).  Congressmen Steve King (R-IA) and Zack Space (D-OH) have introduced a companion bill -- H.R. 2296 -- in the U.S. House and it has 240 cosponsors. The bills would roll back unnecessary restrictions, correct errors, and codify longstanding congressional policies in the firearms arena. These bipartisan bills are a vital step to modernize and improve BATFE operations.

Of highest importance, S. 941 and H.R. 2296 totally rewrite the system of administrative penalties for licensed dealers, manufacturers and importers of firearms. Currently, for most violations, BATFE can only give a federal firearms license (FFL) holder a warning, or revoke his license.

S. 941 and H.R. 2296 would allow fines or license suspensions for less serious violations, while still allowing license revocation for the kind of serious violations that would block an investigation or put guns in the hands of criminals. This will help prevent the all-too-common situations where BATFE has revoked licenses for insignificant technical violations -- such as improper use of abbreviations or filing records in the wrong order.

Among its other provisions, S. 941 and H.R. 2296 would:

  • Clarify the standard for "willful" violations -- allowing penalties for intentional, purposeful violations of the law, but not for simple paperwork mistakes.
  • Improve the process for imposing penalties, notably by allowing FFLs to appeal BATFE penalties to a neutral administrative law judge, rather than to an employee of BATFE itself.
  • Allow a licensee a period of time to liquidate inventory when he goes out of business. During this period, all firearms sold would be subject to a background check by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
  • Allow a grace period for people taking over an existing firearms business to correct problems in the business's records -- so if a person inherited a family gun store (for example), the new owner couldn't be punished for the previous owner's recordkeeping violations.
  • Reform the procedures for consideration of federal firearms license applications. Under S. 941, denial of an application would require notification to the applicant, complete with reasons for the denial. Additionally, an applicant would be allowed to provide supplemental information and to have a hearing on the application.
  • Require BATFE to establish clear investigative guidelines.
  • Clarify the licensing requirement for gunsmiths, distinguishing between repair and other gunsmith work and manufacture of a firearm. This would stop BATFE from arguing that minor gunsmithing or refinishing activities require a manufacturers' license.
  • Eliminate a provision of the Youth Handgun Safety Act that requires those under 18 to have written permission to use a handgun for lawful purposes (such as competitive shooting or safety training) -- even when the parent or guardian is present.
  • Permanently ban creation of a centralized electronic index of out of business dealers' records -- a threat to gun owners' privacy that Congress has barred through appropriations riders for more than a decade.
  • Allow importation and transfer of new machineguns by firearm and ammunition manufacturers for use in developing or testing firearms and ammunition, and training customers. In particular, ammunition manufacturers fulfilling government contracts need to ensure that their ammunition works reliably. S. 941 and H.R. 2296 would also provide for the transfer and possession of new machineguns by professional film and theatrical organizations.
  • Repeal the Brady Act's "interim" waiting period provisions, which expired in 1998.
  • Give BATFE sole responsibility for receiving reports of multiple handgun sales. (Currently, dealers also have to report multiple sales to state or local agencies, a requirement that has shown little or no law enforcement value.) State and local agencies could receive these reports upon request to BATFE, but would have to comply strictly with current requirements to destroy these records after 20 days, unless the person buying the guns turns out to be prohibited from receiving firearms.
  • Restore a policy that allowed importation of barrels, frames and receivers for non-importable firearms, when they can be used as repair or replacement parts.

S. 941 represents the first time such BATFE reform legislation has been introduced in the Senate.  However, the House passed similar legislation (H.R. 5092) in the 109th Congress by a 277-131 vote.  A majority of the House--224 congressmen--cosponsored H.R. 4900 in the 110th Congress.

A fact sheet on S. 941/H.R. 2296 can be found here

As of this writing, S. 941 has 36 cosponsors, and H.R. 2296 has 240 cosponsors.

Please be sure to contact your U.S. Senators and Representative, and ask them to cosponsor and support S. 941 and H.R. 2296!  You can call your U.S. Senators at (202) 224-3121, and your U.S. Representative at (202) 225-3121.

TRENDING NOW
“Unity” President Vows to “Defeat” America’s Oldest and Largest Civil Rights Group

News  

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

“Unity” President Vows to “Defeat” America’s Oldest and Largest Civil Rights Group

Biden issued this “pledge” in a January 8 tweet that falsely tried to suggest the men and women of the NRA were somehow implicated in an infamous crime that was committed a decade ago by ...

Florida Alert! Gun Bills Filed in Florida - SO FAR

Friday, January 15, 2021

Florida Alert! Gun Bills Filed in Florida - SO FAR

As Legislators begin to file bills for the 2021 Florida Legislative Session, we are getting questions about various bills due to media reports on gun bills.  Below is a partial list of bills we will ...

NRA Dumps New York to Reincorporate in Texas, Announces New Strategic Plan

News  

Friday, January 15, 2021

NRA Dumps New York to Reincorporate in Texas, Announces New Strategic Plan

Today, the NRA announced a restructuring plan that positions us for the long-term and ensures our continued success as the nation’s leading advocate for constitutional freedom – free from the toxic political environment of New ...

ATF Withdraws Pistol Brace “Guidance”

News  

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

ATF Withdraws Pistol Brace “Guidance”

On December 23rd, ATF posted a document to its website indicating that its recently published Objective Factors for Classifying Weapons with “Stabilizing Braces” is withdrawn.

Record Amount of Gun Control Legislation Introduced on First Day of Bill Pre-Filing for 2021 Texas Legislative Session

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Record Amount of Gun Control Legislation Introduced on First Day of Bill Pre-Filing for 2021 Texas Legislative Session

Although the 2021 session of the Texas Legislature convenes on January 12, gun control advocates financed by New York billionaire Michael Bloomberg and Beto "Hell Yeah, I'll Take Your Guns" O'Rourke wasted no time in announcing their ...

Double-Standard: Virginia Eliminates Online Carry Courses While Promoting Distancing for Everything Else

News  

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Double-Standard: Virginia Eliminates Online Carry Courses While Promoting Distancing for Everything Else

As part of Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and the General Assembly’s sweeping attack on gun rights in 2020, anti-gun lawmakers enacted legislation that made it more difficult for gun owners to obtain the required training ...

Biden to Nominate Anti-Second Amendment Judge Merrick Garland for Attorney General

News  

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Biden to Nominate Anti-Second Amendment Judge Merrick Garland for Attorney General

President-elect Joe Biden announced he will nominate U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit Judge Merrick Garland for Attorney General. Biden’s choice of a noted Second Amendment opponent to lead the Department ...

OCC Finalizes Non-Discrimination Rule

News  

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

OCC Finalizes Non-Discrimination Rule

On January 14, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) finalized an NRA-supported rule to end politically-motivated discrimination in the provision of financial services. The new regulation is now set to take effect on April ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

Mississippi: Senate Judiciary Committee Scheduled to Vote on Preemption Legislation Tomorrow

Monday, January 18, 2021

Mississippi: Senate Judiciary Committee Scheduled to Vote on Preemption Legislation Tomorrow

Tomorrow, Senate Judiciary B Committee will take up preemption legislation, Senate Bill 2107

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.