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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: July 11, 2018 02:54 PM
From: Representative Perry S. Warren
To: All House members
Subject: Background Checks for Firearms
In the near future, I plan to introduce legislation that would include language from HB 1010 of last session (eliminating all but the family transfer exception to the requirement of a background check prior to the purchase or transfer of a firearm).

Currently, the Crimes Code requires background checks for the sale of all handguns, or sales conducted by a federally licensed dealer. Background checks are not required for the private sale of “long guns.”
Private sales exempted from background checks include “any shotgun with a barrel length of less than 18 inches, any rifle with a barrel length of less than 16 inches or any firearm with an overall length of less than 26 inches.” This exemption includes military-style rifles, like AR-15s, which have been used in some of our country’s deadliest mass shootings.

My legislation would remove this exemption or “gun-show loophole” and would require that all firearm sales, regardless of the barrel length, be conducted in front of a licensed importer, manufacturer, dealer, or county sheriff. Ultimately, this legislation would require background checks be conducted for each firearm purchase, and would ensure that individuals attempting to obtain a firearm and authorized to purchase and possess such a firearm. Transfers between direct family members would still be excluded from the background check requirement as in current law.

Please join me in protecting the residents of this Commonwealth by closing the loopholes that have permitted unauthorized individuals to purchase firearms.

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Introduced as HB2621