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Pennsylvania: Important NICS Background Check System Legislation Introduced

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Pennsylvania: Important NICS Background Check System Legislation Introduced

This week, two important bills, House Bill 763 and Senate Bill 224, have been introduced in the Pennsylvania General Assembly.  Sponsored by state Representative Jason Ortitay (R-46) and state Senator Camera Bartolotta (R-46), these bills would eliminate the current Pennsylvania Instant Check System (PICS), as well as the current handgun record of sale, and replace it with the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which is administered by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).  It is imperative that you contact your state legislators and urge them to support HB 763 and SB 224!  Please click the “Take Action” button to contact your legislators.

Under the NICS system, licensed dealers contact the FBI, via a toll-free telephone number to run a check of computerized criminal history and mental health records at the point of sale for firearm purchases. Upon confirmation that the purchaser has no prohibiting criminal or mental health record, the purchaser may take possession of the firearm.

Since its inception in 1998, PICS has cost Pennsylvania tax payers nearly 120 million dollars to conduct background checks on gun purchasers in the Keystone State.  By replacing the system with NICS, taxpayers in Pennsylvania would be relieved of a burdensome, duplicative process and would be able to take advantage of the more efficient federal system.  Currently, 30 states, including the District of Columbia, solely utilize the NICS system for all firearm background checks. 

Once again, please click the “Take Action” button above to contact your state Senator and state Representative in support of HB 763 and SB 224.

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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.