This week, the Delaware Senate passed Substitute Bill 1 to Senate Bill 83 on a 15 - 6 vote. SB 83, as previously reported, was an anti-gun bill designed to bypass due process to deprive gun owners of their rights in domestic abuse proceedings.
Your NRA-ILA was able to amend the bill to remove the most egregious of the due process violations, and include an alternative to gun owners being forced to relinquish their property to law enforcement agencies. The substitute bill, as passed, removes ex parte orders from those Court orders which are nationally prohibitive for firearms rights, guaranteeing that Delaware residents will not become prohibited persons without due process of law. Additionally, in orders that require a temporary loss of firearms rights, Delaware residents will now be able to turn over their firearms to a dealer for consignment or storage, rather than to law enforcement. For those firearms that are turned over to law enforcement, records relating to that property will be kept private and are not subject to public information requests. Finally, provisions which would have required the entry into the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) of certain convictions which are prohibitive under Delaware law, but not federal law, were removed ensuring that Delaware citizens will be given equal treatment with citizens of other states in the application of federal firearm laws.
While the substitute bill does not improve current Delaware law, it did prevent a serious transgression against the due process rights of Delaware citizens. Your NRA-ILA will continue to fight to improve Delaware law to the benefit of Delawareans and to respect the rights guaranteed them under both the US and Delaware Constitutions.
Also, thanks to the actions of Delaware NRA members, your NRA-ILA was able to defeat House Bill 168, the safe storage law previously reported on here. That bill failed a vote to release it from committee for a floor vote and is now dead.
Further, House Bill 192, a bill which allows Delaware municipalities to enact ordinances prohibiting open carry of firearms in local government buildings, was released from Committee, and is now awaiting action on the floor of the Delaware House. This bill is an opt-in program, requiring municipal governments to take local government action to enact such a provision, and requires that any such provision include exceptions for holders of Delaware carry permits, and excludes the display of firearms inadvertently or when used in defense of self or others.
Finally, Senate Bill 68, previously reported here, was considered on the floor of the Senate yesterday. The Senate adopted an NRA-supported amendment in an 11-9 vote to remove firearms and ammunition from the provisions of this bill. The premise that our heritage shooting sports are harmful to youth is offensive and wrong. Following the adoption of this amendment, SB 68 was tabled and the NRA amendment was later stripped from the bill in a 12-4 vote following parliamentary action by anti-gun Senators. The bill then passed and moves to the House for action next week. Please contact your state Representative and politely urge him or her to OPPOSE SB 68 without the NRA-supported amendment. Click the button below to take action now!
Your NRA-ILA will continue to report on this and other legislation of interest as the Delaware legislative session enters its last days.