Firearms Dealer Bill Hearing on February 20

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Maryland: Egregious Firearms Dealer Legislation Introduced, Plus Assault Weapons Expansion
Firearms Dealer Bill Hearing on February 20

Things aren’t getting any better for the firearms industry in Annapolis as more bills dealing with our industry were introduced prior to the filing deadline. Senate Bill 816, introduced by state Sen. Jeff Waldstreicher and dubbed the “Firearms Dealers’ Safety Act,” does nothing to promote public safety but mandates burdensome and even some unattainable requirements for firearms retailers. This bill is set for a hearing in the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee on Thursday, February 20.
Senate Bill 816 requires the following of those who possess a Maryland Regulated Firearms Dealer License:

  • Requires electronic keeping of records of all receipts, sale, and other dispositions of firearms
  • Requires records to be updated within one (1) business day after the acquisition of a firearm
  • Requires records to be updated within seven (7) days after the sale or disposition of a firearm
  • Requires video and audio recording of all receipts, sales, disposition and for that video and audio to be kept for one (1) year
  • Requires video and audio recording be made available to following: The Secretary, federal agency in connection with an investigation, party to a civil action after receiving a subpoena or discovery request
  • Requires dealers to develop and keep written standard operating procedure to protect inventory from theft, to include: Locks, Exterior Lighting, Surveillance Cameras, and Alarm System
  • Prohibits firearms dealers from hiring an employee who is prohibited from possessing a firearm and requires criminal background checks be conducted on all employees annually, to include finger printing
  • Requires a dealer to maintain liability insurance for the acts of another using a firearm sold, rented, transferred by the licensed dealer in the amount of $2 million
  • Requires dealers to report the theft of any firearm to law enforcement immediately upon discovering the theft
  • During business hours requires:
    • Firearms be stored in locking display case or another secure location inaccessible to customers
    • Render all firearms displayed to customers inoperable with a trigger lock or another mechanism
  • Outside of business hours requires all firearms to be locked in:
    • A vault, safe, or reinforced display case with shatterproof glass

Firearms dealers are already some of the most heavily regulated businesses in Maryland. Senate Bill 816 will not promote safety, but will cause undue burden on lawful businesses, and perhaps drive some out of business.
Contact members of the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee today and urge them to vote “NO” on Senate Bill 816.
Senator William C. Smith, Jr. (D), Chair - 410-841-3634
Senator Jeff Waldstreicher (D), Vice Chair & Sponsor of SB 816 - 410-841-3137
Senator Jill P. Carter (D) - 410-841-3697
Senator Shelly Hettleman (D) - 410-841-3131
Senator Susan C. Lee (D) - 410-841-3124
Senator Charles E. Sydnor, III (D) - 410-841-3612
Senator Ronald N. Young (D) - 410-841-3575
Senator Robert Cassilly (R) - 410-841-3158
Senator Michael J. Hough (R) - 410-841-3704
Senator Justin Ready (R) - 410-841-3683
Senator Chris West (R) - 410-841-3648
Expansion of Assault Weapons Ban – House Bill 1261
Legislators in Maryland are seeking to expand the state’s current assault weapons ban by adding to what is considered a “copycat weapon.” House Bill 1261, introduced by the Speaker and Delegates Atterbeary and Luedtke, seeks to ban more firearms by adding to the “features test” and going from two features to one feature. The bill reaches far beyond Maryland’s current assault weapons ban and would now include commonly owned, and previously legal semiautomatic rifles, shotguns, and pistols. House Bill 1261 has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee but has not been scheduled for a hearing.

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