California: Excise Tax Bill Reemerges as the Legislature Continues to Fast Track Gun Control
This week, the legislature passed all the gun control bills heard before the Public Safety Committees and will continue their push next week to fast track a number of bills to the Governor. Additionally, the firearm and ammunition excise tax bill, formerly Assembly Bill 1223, which failed to meet deadlines earlier this year, was gutted and amended into Assembly Bill 1227. AB 1227 passed through the Assembly as an energy bill earlier this year, but now creates an excise tax on firearms, ammunition, and parts, picking up the progress attained under the previous subject matter. AB 1227 will be considered in a policy committee next week, along with a number of other gun control bills, continuing the assault on California’s law-abiding gun owners. Use the “Take Action” buttons below to contact committee members to oppose the many gun control bills up for hearings next week.
Senate Appropriations Committee at 10:00AM on June 13th
Assembly Bill 1769, introduced by Assembly Member Steve Bennett (D-37), prohibits officers, employees, operators, lessees, or licensees of the 31st District Agricultural Association from entering into any agreement to allow for the sale of any firearm, firearm parts, or ammunition on property or buildings that comprise the Ventura County Fair and Event Center or properties in Ventura County and the City of Ventura that are owned, leased, operated, or occupied by the District. This imposes a one-size-fits-all restriction to prevent officials from deciding how to use venues.
Assembly Bill 2156, introduced by Assembly Member Buffy Wicks (D-15), reduces the number of firearms a private citizen can manufacture in a year from 50 to no more than three. In addition, it prohibits private citizens from using 3D printing to make firearms, precursor parts, or magazines. This arbitrary ban on 3D printing only harasses law-abiding hobbyists who wish to explore this new and emerging manufacturing process. It does not impose a similar ban on legacy manufacturing methods, such as milling, stamping, casting, welding, or injection molding, all of which are proven methods for making reliable firearms. It is already illegal under federal and state law for prohibited persons, such as felons, to possess firearms, including ones they make themselves, regardless of manufacturing method.
Please click here to contact the Senate Appropriations Committee and ask them to OPPOSE Assembly Bills 1769 and 2156.
Senate Judiciary Committee at 1:30PM on June 14th
Assembly Bill 1594, introduced by Assembly Member Phil Ting (D-19), creates a private right of action against firearm industry members for failure to implement “reasonable” controls. This intentionally vague term can subject the industry to crippling lawsuits regardless of whether there is any actual violation of law. The firearm industry is already highly regulated through federal and state laws, with violations carrying stiff penalties. This is the latest salvo in gun control advocates’ long-running effort to circumvent the federal Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), which ensures Americans have reasonable access to firearms. The PLCAA does not prohibit lawsuits against the firearm industry for knowingly unlawful sales, for negligent entrustment, and on traditional products liability grounds.
Assembly Bill 2571, introduced by Assembly Member Rebecca Bauer-Kahan (D-16), bans advertising or marketing firearms or ammunition in a way that is “attractive to minors,” replacing the language in current law banning specifically “advertis[ing] to minors.” This vague term can potentially ban all firearm advertisements or activities involving firearms, such as hunting and hunter education. Though minors may not purchase firearms or ammunition from dealers under state and federal laws, many minors do use firearms for legitimate purposes under adult supervision and instruction, such as for hunting, competition shooting, and recreational shooting. Advertisements appealing to adult shooters and hunters also appeal to young shooters and hunters. While these young shooters and hunters are not buying firearms or ammunition themselves, their mentors do often include them in the process when shopping to teach them about selecting equipment that is safe and suitable.
Please click here to contact the Senate Judiciary Committee and ask them to OPPOSE Assembly Bills 1594 and 2571.
Assembly Judiciary Committee at 9:00AM on June 14th
Senate Bill 1327, introduced by Senator Robert Hertzberg (D-18), creates a private right of action that allows individuals to file civil suits against anyone who manufactures, distributes, transports, sells, or imports firearms banned in California, as well as precursor firearm parts. Current law allows for remedies for illegal activities by firearm dealers and manufacturers. The language contained in this bill, along with the rhetoric surrounding it, betrays the political purpose of its sponsors. The bill is aimed at using the gun issue as a political football, making clear that the legislation would become inoperative should the U.S. Supreme Court overturn Texas’s recently passed abortion law or if that law is repealed by the Texas Legislature.
Please click here to contact the Assembly Judiciary Committee and ask them to OPPOSE SB 1327.
Senate Governance and Finance Committee at 9:00AM on June 15th
Assembly Bill 1227, introduced by Assembly Member Marc Levine (D-10), was gutted and amended to contain language from Assembly Bill 1223. It places an excise tax of 10% on the sales price of a handgun, and places an 11% excise tax on the sales price of all long guns, rifles, firearm precursor parts and ammunition. These taxes are to be collected from California retailers and placed in a newly created fund for appropriation by the state legislature. It is unjust to saddle law-abiding gun owners with special taxes. Such a measure makes it more expensive for law-abiding citizens to exercise a constitutional right, and discourages them from practicing to be safe and proficient with their firearms for purposes such as self-defense, competition, and hunting.
Please click here to contact the Senate Governance and Finance Committee and ask them to OPPOSE AB 1227.
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Article by NRA-ILA