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Target shooting H.4552 approved

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According to the Sunday Worcester T & G "Beacon Hill Roll Call" (p. A13),
Senate 38-0, approved a bill requiring the state's Public Safety Office to establish a list of firearms used solely for formal target shooting competition and to exempt them from the current law that bans the use of firearms which do not pass state safety tests. The House has approved a different version of the measure and the Senate version now goes to the House for consideration. A "Yes" vote is for the bill.

Nothing said about the differences specifically. Hope they're not along the lines of S.469, Mandatory Education For Hunters:

Senate 38-0, approved and sent to the House a bill requiring that individuals who apply for sporting, hunting, fishing, or trapping licenses complete the Massachusetts Hunter Education Program. The proposal would repeal a current law that exempts from the education program anyone who has a firearm license. A "Yes" vote is for the bill

Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems like one step forward, two steps back!
 
Here is the info from the GOAL web site as of today:

Senate OKs Formal Target Guns, but Says No to Single Actions

On Thursday, May 11, 2006, the Massachusetts took up GOAL's Target Shooters Bill. In short, the Senate voted to amend the bill to remove the language concerning single action revolvers, but kept the language regarding "formal target shooting firearms". Once the bill was amended on a "Voice Vote", the bill passed by a vote of 38 - 0. The new language now does two out of the three things in the orginal language.

Formally placed in law that any firearm lawfully owned or possessed under a license issued under this chapter on or before October 21, 1998 would be exempt from the testing criteria. As our members know, this language was passed into law in Section 79 of the Acts of 1998, but was never actually placed into the statutes. This bill now properly places this exemption in Chapter 140.

Instructs the Executive Office of Public Safety, with the Advice of the Gun Control Advisory Board, to create a list of formal target shooting firearms that shall be exempt from the testing criteria. This process will be similar to how the approved roster works now.

While this certainly is not all that we were working towards, it is still a small step in the right direction.

It is also important for our members to know that the Attorney General was lobbying heavily to have his office be in charge of creating the list of formal target guns. Fortunately, GOAL was able to convince the Senate that such a move would be in no-ones best interest. We were also successful in that no further gun control amendments were added to the bill such as the .50 caliber ban, the Herstal 5.7 ban, the One Gun a Month, etc. That itself is a not so small victory.

I would like to thank all of our members who made calls and wrote emails.

Below is the language that passed the Senate:

“SECTION 1. Section 123 of chapter 140 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2004 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the first paragraph the following paragraph:-

Clauses Eighteenth to Twenty-first, inclusive, of the first paragraph shall not apply to: (a) any firearm lawfully owned or possessed under a license issued under this chapter on or before October 21, 1998; or (b) any firearm designated by the secretary of public safety, with the advice of the gun control advisory board established pursuant to section 131½ of chapter 140, as a firearm solely designed and sold for formal target shooting competition. The secretary of public safety shall compile a list, on a bi-annual basis, of firearms designated as formal target shooting firearms in accordance with this paragraph. Such list shall be made available for distribution by the executive office of public safety.”; and by striking out the title and inserting in place thereof the following title:- “ An Act further regulating the use of target shooting weapons.”.
 
Well this is great news. Who knows what will make the new list but anything that gives us some extra options is always a good thing. Hopefully we'll see STI's and Kimbers etc. on the new list. I wonder how long it will take to compile this list. One thing that stinks is the list will be updated biannually. Either way it should help us out a little...

Pete
 
Cross-X said:
Formally placed in law that any firearm lawfully owned or possessed under a license issued under this chapter on or before October 21, 1998 would be exempt from the testing criteria. As our members know, this language was passed into law in Section 79 of the Acts of 1998, but was never actually placed into the statutes. This bill now properly places this exemption in Chapter 140.

Darius, what does this actually mean? I don't understand what this does for us.
 
The hunting law puts us in line with the other 49 states in requiring this Federally designed course. We used to have it, but it was 'forgotten' in 1998. While I'm against any mandated classes, its the same as any other state now, and it's something that was here in the past. as far as bad stuff gles, this one is pretty small. Of course, in this state, finding a course to get into is not easy.

Several of us are lobbing hard in Riverside's Board to make the incestment to get this going, but since it's an expense to the club (materials are paid for by the government, but the building, utilities, and instructors are all volunteered) it's been hard. Hopefully now that it's a law again, we can show the need. If anyone is interested in getting certified as a hunting instructor, PM me so I can add you to the list.
 
It isn't signed into law yet.

Then there is usually some preamble that usually sets an effective date of 90 days later IIRC. Then the CHSB has to set procedures in place (usually create a CMR and get sign off from Sec of Public Safety), then solicit and get "applications" from mfrs to add their guns, which CHSB recommends to Sec. of Public Safety. When Sec. of Public Safety gets around to accepting/rejecting the recommendations, they go on a list to be added to the published List at some future time. Only when the List is published (typically) can the gun legally be sold.

You are looking at a 6 month lag time, minimum IMNSHO.
 
I would be surprised if it was a quick as six months. Knowing the state this will drag out for a while. [wink]
 
LenS said:
At any point, an unfriendly Sec. of Public Safety (e.g. like Flynn was) can drag this out to infinity!

That is exactly why I am not overly optimistic about it. [thinking]
 
The most disappointing part of this eviscerated bill is not the deletion of the single-action revolvers, which affects comparatively few shooters, but the removal of the components provision. There are far more reloaders than SASS shooters in this state and the classification of mere components as loaded ammunition cripples that aspect of the sport here.
 
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