Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN Legal & Legislation

Florida Governor Rick Scott has Signed the Gun Club Tax Prohibition

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Florida Governor Rick Scott has Signed the Gun Club Tax Prohibition

DATE:  June 16, 2015
TO:       USF & NRA Members and Friends
FROM: Marion P. Hammer
             USF Executive Director
             NRA Past President

Governor Rick Scott wasted no time and signed the Tax Cut bill today, Tuesday, June 16, 2015.  The Gun Club Tax prohibition of the bill takes effect on July 1, 2015.

The section containing the gun club exemption begins on page 15, line 376 of the bill and the Gun Club language begins on page 19, line 482.

Read the bill here:   HB-33A Tax Cuts

The provision was inserted by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Shalimar) to EXPRESSLY PROHIBIT the Florida Department of Revenue (DOR) from forcing Gun Clubs to pay sales taxes on membership dues and fees and to stop DOR from activity that threatens to shut down Gun Club shooting ranges.

Special thanks go to Rep. Matt Gaetz (R), House Speaker Steve Crisafulli (R), Sen. Dorothy Hukill (R), Sen. Tom Lee (R), Sen. Don Gaetz (R) and Senate President Andy Gardiner (R).

AND SPECIAL THANKS TO GOVERNOR RICK SCOTT


BACKGROUND ON DOR'S UNLAWFUL GUN CLUB TAX

In 2010 we became aware that the Department of Revenue (DOR) had started targeting gun clubs for the collection of sales tax on club membership dues as an admission tax.

The tax is a violation of the firearms preemption law (790.33) which says:

"Except as EXPRESSLY provided by the state Constitution or general law, the Legislature hereby declares that it is occupying the whole field of regulation of firearms and ammunition ..."  It could not be more clear.

The Florida Legislature has NEVER EXPRESSLY authorized a sales tax on Gun Club membership dues and fees.

This is an unlawful tax that is being willfully and arrogantly imposed in violation of state law.

It is being willfully imposed because in June 2010, Lt. Governor Jeff Kottkamp wrote the Director of DOR notifying her that the tax was unlawful.  He asked her to stop imposing it and to refund the taxes already collected.

It is being arrogantly imposed because DOR ignored the Lt. Governor's written request and did not even have the courtesy to respond to him. 

DOR has continued to force clubs to pay the tax and even demanded that clubs pay taxes retroactively, hitting them with tax bills that would force ranges to close.

In Tallahassee, a Gun Club was hit with a tax bill of $20,000. It reported to us that the club was going to have to borrow the money to pay the back taxes to keep from losing their range.

An attorney downstate told us the club he represented was forced to pay $50,000 in back taxes.

Gun clubs have been reluctant to sue because DOR has unlimited tax dollars to fight a lawsuit.

In addition, DOR is violating constitutional rights.  Taxing membership dues and fees is a violation of the First Amendment right to assemble. 

And since gun clubs hold meetings and discuss legislation impacting their Second Amendment rights, this is a tax on their right to freedom of political speech.

Further, the 7th District US Court of Appeals ruled that "the right to train at a range...[is at] the core of the Second Amendment right to possess firearms for self-defense."    Ezell v. Chicago, 651 F.3d 684 (7th Cir. 2011)

DOR has created its own tax on Gun Clubs.  For over four years, gun clubs have been trying to resolve this issue with DOR and DOR just keeps ignoring the law.  

The Legislature has now taken action to stop this abuse.  The language in this bill – once and for all –  EXPRESSLY PROHIBITS the collection of sales tax on Gun Club membership fees.

IN THIS ARTICLE
Florida Shooting Ranges Taxes
TRENDING NOW
Outrage of the Week: Shopify Targets America's Guns

News  

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Outrage of the Week: Shopify Targets America's Guns

Hundreds of firearms retailers may have to close soon because a powerful Canadian tech company, Shopify, recently decided it was anti-gun and issued an ultimatum: Do business our way or not at all.

Divided Appeals Panel Upholds California Ban on Post-2013 Pistols

News  

Friday, August 10, 2018

Divided Appeals Panel Upholds California Ban on Post-2013 Pistols

Imagine if California, to combat what the legislature considered the serious problem of manmade global warming, required all new vehicles sold by car dealers in the state to run on grass clippings, rather than fossil ...

King County Unveils “Common Sense” Action Plan: Ban “Semi-automatic, High Velocity Weapons”

News  

Friday, August 10, 2018

King County Unveils “Common Sense” Action Plan: Ban “Semi-automatic, High Velocity Weapons”

In a July 23rd op-ed, Joe McDermott, the Council Chair of King County, Washington, introduced a multi-prong “King County Gun Safety Action Plan” aimed at reducing gun violence.

NoFundMe: NRA Protest March Nets $70 in National Fundraising Effort

News  

Friday, August 10, 2018

NoFundMe: NRA Protest March Nets $70 in National Fundraising Effort

Crowd funding is a relatively recent innovation that allows a person or cause to leverage the vast reach of the Internet to raise money for virtually every imaginable purpose. Even small donations of a few ...

Canada: Toronto Mayor Calls for Gun Bans, Ontario Premier Targets Criminals

News  

Friday, August 10, 2018

Canada: Toronto Mayor Calls for Gun Bans, Ontario Premier Targets Criminals

Canadian anti-gun politicians’ campaign to disarm law-abiding citizens continued this week. On Monday, the Canadian press reported on an August 3 letter from Toronto Mayor John Tory to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. In the missive, Tory appeared to back ...

NRA Endorses Hyde-Smith for U.S. Senate

News  

Monday, August 13, 2018

NRA Endorses Hyde-Smith for U.S. Senate

FAIRFAX, Va. – The National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund (NRA-PVF) announced on Monday its endorsement of Cindy Hyde-Smith to represent Mississippi in the U.S. Senate. 

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.

Adventures in Correlation

News  

Friday, August 10, 2018

Adventures in Correlation

Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut recently linked to a news article about a CDC report on homicides, claiming that “allowing more guns in more places isn’t making us safer. It’s doing the opposite.”

NRA Statement on 3-D Printers and Plastic Firearms

News  

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

NRA Statement on 3-D Printers and Plastic Firearms

FAIRFAX, Va.— Chris W. Cox, executive director, National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action, released the following statement on Tuesday:  

Schumer Goes Full Semi-automatic

Gun Laws  

News  

Friday, July 27, 2018

Schumer Goes Full Semi-automatic

Everybody knows you never go full semiautomatic. That is, except Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and his anti-gun comrades. On July 22, the Senate minority leader decided to fear-monger about homemade 3D-printed firearms following a Justice Department settlement that will ...

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.