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Immediate Action Needed to Stop ATF 41P, Comments Close on December 9

ISSUE: The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has issued a notice of proposed rulemaking which if approved, would completely change the criteria for the establishment of National Firearms Act (NFA) trusts by individuals and corporations. It would require any individual using a trust to be photographed, fingerprinted and most egregiously, obtain the approval by signature of their local chief law enforcement officer (CLEO). This would result in an effective ban on NFA trusts in many areas where CLEOs simply refuse any and all requests for approval based on ideological or political reasons.

BACKGROUND: With the enactment of the National Firearms Act of 1934, and its subsequent enhancement in 1986, there are only two legal ways to acquire items classified as NFA controlled. These items include machine guns, short-barreled rifles, short-barreled shotguns, suppressors, destructive devices, and the catch-all category, "any other weapons". There are two methods of legally obtaining these items - as a private owner or, as a member of a trust. Private owners must acquire the signature of their CLEO on ATF Form 4, approving the transfer of NFA items. However, trust members currently do not. As there is no requirement for CLEOs to sign the ATF Form 4, some in predominately anti-gun cities and counties simply refuse to do so. Thus the trust has been the only way for some people to legally obtain NFA items.

LOCAL EXAMPLES: In Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw flat out refuses to endorse any such requests. A noted anti-gun sheriff, Bradshaw has publicly endorsed an assault weapons ban, a high-capacity magazine ban. Likewise, neighboring Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel is quoted in a March 1, 2013 statement as saying:
"I fully support legislation to reinstate the federal assault weapons ban. Enforcing a uniform national background check before the sale or transfer of firearms and prohibiting large capacity magazines and armor-piercing bullets are also essential steps in better protecting our communities. The passage of these reasonable restrictions also allows for the protection of our Second Amendment rights for all law-abiding gun owners."
IMPACT: If ATF 41P is approved, it will completely deny residents of affected localities a legal method of acquiring NFA items, and on an ideological level, hammers yet another nail in the coffin of the Second Amendment.

WHY SHOULD YOU ACT? Even though many of us will never own an NFA item, nor ever complete an ATF Form 4, the implications are enormous. Because of the ATF's ability to classify virtually any firearm, accessory, component, or feature to the list of NFA items without congressional concurrence, the potential for abuse is huge. An anti-gun sheriff or police chief could implement a virtual stranglehold on the ownership of NFA items in his jurisdiction simply by refusing to sign ATF Forms 4. Even more nefariously, they could sign and approve only those of political cronies, campaign donors, and police officers.

Florida Carry vehemently opposes ATF 41P, and urges its members and friends to take immediate action to comment on this extreme move to further infringe on the right of the people to keep and bear arms.
HOW CAN YOU HELP? The easiest way to comment is by using this link: http://tiny.cc/qj7a5w. The link will take you to the commenting portal noted below, and will prefill the agency and docket number for you. Then just click the comment button. Don't forget to complete the required information below the comment form. At the end of the process, you will get a comment tracking number.


1,238 Posts
Finally submitted my comment today. Basically it was a respectful tirade against the CLEO certification requirement for individuals with a conclusion that expanding such a requirement makes no logical sense. ATF will probably pay it no mind, but at least I participated in the process. Not sure if you have the right to complain if you decide not to participate in the process. So my subtle suggestion is to please post a comment. It doesn't have to be an essay, just a thorough but classy trashing of the proposed rule.

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