Va-alert: Urgent legislative alert! 1/20/09


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W.E.G.
January 20, 2009, 01:28 AM
VA-ALERT: URGENT LEGISLATIVE ALERT! 1/20/09

-----Original Message-----
From: Philip Van Cleave
Sent: Tuesday, January 20, 2009 12:20 AM
Subject: VA-ALERT: URGENT LEGISLATIVE ALERT! 1/20/09

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VCDL's meeting schedule: http://www.vcdl.org/meetings.html
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Abbreviations used in VA-ALERT: http://www.vcdl.org/help/abbr.html
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URGENT! Please follow the instructions below as soon as possible,
even if you can't do it until after this morning:

Today, Tuesday, January 20th, Senator Watkins has a bill, SB 1166,
that will be heard in subcommittee. It will raise the background
check tax on gun owners who are purchasing a gun 150%!

It will go from $2 to $5 if his bill becomes law.

This is the NICS check fee you pay the gun dealer when the dealer has
the State Police run a background check on you.

The question is - why are GUN OWNERS having to pay this tax at all???
The tax doesn't benefit gun owners. I already know I have a clean
background. I'm sure it is the same for you.

The argument for the tax is that it is for "public safety."

Fine, then the general public should pay for it out of the State's
general funds!

Better yet, the Commonwealth could save MILLIONS by letting the
federal government do the NICS check for FREE and get the State Police
out of that business altogether. Therefore even the current $2 tax
would not be necessary.

To send a message to your Senator about opposing SB 1166, click here:

http://tinyurl.com/7ptm4y




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VA-ALERT is a project of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, Inc.
(VCDL). VCDL is an all-volunteer, non-partisan grassroots organization
dedicated to defending the human rights of all Virginians. The Right to
Keep and Bear Arms is a fundamental human right.

VCDL web page: http://www.vcdl.org
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Bill_Rights
January 20, 2009, 09:12 AM
I reside in Virginia and am on VCDL's E-mailing list, as well as a member of NRA-ILA and VGOC (VGOC=Virginina Gun Owners' Coalition) and on their action lists. Just yesterday I responded to a VCDL E-mail alert by writing an E-mail to Delegate Vivian Watts in support of three other bills (pro-RKBA)before the VA legislature. VCDL's "tinyurl" link at the bottom is very handy for reaching my delegate.

The other three bills I supported were much more substantive to support than this one is to oppose, unless I am missing something. [I or some other Virginian can summarize or give links to the other three bills if the THR membership wants.]

An increase in the small fee to run a background check seems not to be the "hill to die on", so to speak. Our opposition to this "reasonable" tax may feed into the anti-gun folks accusations of us being knee-jerk fanatics against gun control. But I am open to persuasion. I realize a small compromise on principle can lead to great losses later on.

The evil twin of background checks, from data collected by the government at the same time as the background check, I think, is firearm tracing. Restricting firearm tracing information to LE agencies working on legitimate investigations is a big deal. Wasn't that what the "Tiahrt Amendment" was all about, which NRA supported? I sat that one out. Anybody care to recap what happened with that and what the future prospects are?

If a Virginia tax helped isolate firearm purchase records from trolls (lawyers) who want to "mine" the databases for fodder for civil suits (which, I thought was one thing the Tiahrt amendment was trying to prevent), then I will gladly pay the increased fee.

One detail in the VCDL E-mail blast that also sends up red flags for me was the idea of surrendering VA state police authority in the background checks to the federal government. Or some such. What is the detail on that? In any case, I am a state's rights kind of guy and trust our ability to favorably influence our state officials over federal (namelss faceless) bureaucrats. Somebody straighten me out here....

WOPR
January 20, 2009, 09:54 AM
let me see if I have condensed this down properly.

1) they would like to raise the fee $3 up to $5
2) you feel everyone in your state should pay for your background check
3)better yet, you feel that every american should pay for it, by having the federal government perform the check

is that right? well, if it is, I can't say I have any sympathy. a few dollars does not seem like an unreasonable increase. referring to it as 150% is just sensationalizing it. its your decision to make the purchase, shouldn't you be responsible for the applicable fees/taxes? would you like to pay the tax on my next car for me? well, I would not like to pay the fees on your gun purchases that you elect to make.

I think bill has some good points about picking your battles. this is one of those times.

that fee has been $5 here in FL for as long as I can remember. welcome to the club!

Gtone
January 20, 2009, 10:08 AM
Yeah...$5 for a 20min wait beats the old way in VA of multiple weeks waiting for the local LEO boss to sign a card with your prints on it. I'm ok with this. And I don't think other folks should bear the cost for my choice to purchase.

But I'd really like to see the 'CCW in restaurants' passed already.

WOPR
January 20, 2009, 10:23 AM
But I'd really like to see the 'CCW in restaurants' passed already.

now THAT'S something I can get behind! I really feel for Virginians on that one...

DKSuddeth
January 20, 2009, 01:00 PM
I think some people are missing the point, besides the fact that you're already having to pay a tax to exercise a fundamental right to begin with, is that this year it's only a 3$ raise. Next year could be just a 5$ raise. The year after that, you could be looking at 20$ for a background check, or 30$.

Bill_Rights
January 20, 2009, 01:54 PM
Since members Gtone and WOPR referenced it, here is the text of the Virginia law that would be changed by VA house bill HB 1821, introduced by Delegate Joseph Johnson (D-4). See section "J3", with mark-ups. Basically, it says a CCW holder may carry a weapon into a restaurant that serves alcohol but may not him/herself drink any alcohol. Also, upon quick glance, it appears the CCW holder must notify a restaurant employee that he/she is carrying. Anyway, here is link:

http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?091+ful+HB1821

waterhouse
January 20, 2009, 02:14 PM
An increase in the small fee to run a background check seems not to be the "hill to die on", so to speak. Our opposition to this "reasonable" tax may feed into the anti-gun folks accusations of us being knee-jerk fanatics against gun control. But I am open to persuasion. I realize a small compromise on principle can lead to great losses later on.

It isn't reasonable that you even pay the $2. The federal gov't runs the checks for free.

better yet, you feel that every american should pay for it, by having the federal government perform the check

The Federal gov't already runs the NICS system. All they have to do is use it. I log in and run checks about 3-5 times a day. It doesn't cost me anything to run background checks.

WOPR
January 20, 2009, 03:00 PM
I am only taking issue with the use of "free". my point is that by passing the responsibility onto the federal government, you are passing the charge onto everyone. although you won't have to pay your $5 when you purchase a weapon, you will be paying for it in the end.

who funds the federal government? so then, is it really "free"?

pretending that the procedure is "free" because you don't pay for it immediately is short sighted, and ignores the facts. we ALL WILL pay for it.

the fact of the matter is that on the other end of that phone is a (probably) hard working man or woman who costs money to employ. and since its your decision to make the purchase, it should be your responsibility to pay for their services.

if you're real issue is the check itself, and your real motive is the abolition of the system, then you're issue isn't with the increase, but with the background check system.

waterhouse
January 20, 2009, 03:11 PM
I am only taking issue with the use of "free". my point is that by passing the responsibility onto the federal government, you are passing the charge onto everyone. although you won't have to pay your $5 when you purchase a weapon, you will be paying for it in the end.

Here's the thing: everyone is already paying for it. NICS is in existence already on a Federal level. Residents of many states don't pay for a background check when they buy a gun, but background checks are still run on the federal system. Sure, it may not be "free", but if you are paying $2 or $5 or whatever, you are paying to run NICS on a federal level (through your taxes) AND you are paying your state to run a check.

we ALL WILL pay for it.

We ALL ALREADY ARE paying for it. I'm just trying to figure out why some states require us all to pay it (federally) and then require resident gun buyers to pay it again.

Even without the gun issue it is another example of government waste.

the fact of the matter is that on the other end of that phone is a (probably) hard working man or woman who costs money to employ.

I speak to a person on maybe 1 out of 100 checks (if that). I log into the system, type in the name and DOB and some other items, and the computer spits out an answer. I do understand that a computer and database cost money, but on a federal level you don't usually have to have another human being involved.

MT GUNNY
January 20, 2009, 03:13 PM
Im glad we in MT dont have to pay a Fee For a NICS Check.

748
January 20, 2009, 06:16 PM
Now $2
Soon $5
Later $10
Then $20
After that $40
Soon after $50, $60, $$$

See what I'm getting at?
So how much is too much?
I think we established a long time ago the antigunners want to use taxation to limit fire arm ownership.
Give them an inch they will take a mile.

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