Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signed a “red flag” gun confiscation bill into law, in addition to a measure that extends the waiting period for gun buys to 72 hours.
Bruce Rauner Signs ‘Red Flag’ Bill
HB 2354, also known as the Lethal Violence Order of Protection Act, authorizes a court to remove firearms, a FOID card and a CCW license from a person who poses “an immediate and present danger of causing personal injury to himself, herself, or another by having” a gun in his or her possession. The person who petitions to have the firearms removed can be a law enforcement officer, family member or a dating partner. The gun seizures can be issued by a judge ex parte, meaning without the subject of the order being present.
“Today I signed legislation to keep firearms out of the hands of those who would use them to commit acts of violence against themselves or others, after proof is provided,” Rauner said on Twitter.
Unsurprisingly, the move was hailed by gun control groups.
“While Congress remains silent, states like Illinois are responding to calls from Americans of all ages to do more to keep us safe,” Gabby Giffords said in a statement. “Today is another step in the right direction as Illinois communities now have a path to ensure those experiencing a crisis do not have access to guns.”
Waiting Period Bill
SB 3256, the second measure Rauner signed, institutes a 72-hour waiting period for firearm purchases. State law had previously required a 72-hour waiting period for handgun sales, but only a 24-hour waiting period for rifles. Rauner’s signature means that the 72-hour wait time now applies to all guns one wants to buy.
“This sweeping ‘cooling off’ period for guns will protect people throughout the state by keeping guns out of the wrong hands,” said the bill’s sponsor, State Senator Elgie Sims, D-Chicago. “The 72-hour waiting period provides a strong and effective tool in our efforts to keep our communities safe.”
Gun Licensing Bill
Rauner did, however, veto a bill that would implement a new licensing process for gun dealers in Illinois. The Chicago Tribune effectively lays out what that measure entailed:
Anyone who sells, leases or transfers 10 or more firearms a year would have to be licensed by the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation, a cost that would be limited to $1,000 every five years.
Dealers and their employees would have to take training to make sure they know how to properly conduct background checks, store guns, prevent thefts and thwart straw purchases, in which someone buys a gun on behalf of a person who is barred from doing so.
Retailers also would be required to install video surveillance systems and conduct more regular inventory. Before they could receive a license, sellers would have to pass an inspection and obtain written approval from their county sheriff. Owners and employees would also be required to pass the same background checks as those seeking to make a purchase, and state regulators could require workers to undergo fingerprinting, provide a recent photograph and sign a release for other records.
State legislators have since passed a revised version of the bill, but Rauner has indicated he will veto it if it comes across his desk.