Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gun News

Nebraska: Fight for Gun Rights in Omaha Continues
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
At last night’s Omaha City Council meeting, council members voted against adopting the poorly written changes to current Omaha gun laws by a 5 to 2 vote, but they will revisit these issues next month.  Councilmen Pete Festersen and Ben Gray voted for the proposed ordinance as is.  This proposal, pushed by Omaha Police Chief Alex Hayes and Assistant City Attorney Michelle Peters, would have increased handgun registration fees from $10 to $15, failed to clearly define what constituted a “concealable firearm” and mirror current state and federal language with regard to qualifications for possession and registration.
You can view the proposed ordinance, as considered last night, here.
Thank you to all NRA members who contacted Omaha officials about the proposed infringement of their Second Amendment rights.  This fight is far from over, as the issue will be revisited by the city council next month.  The NRA will stay vigilant on this developing matter and will continue to alert our members as the council vote draws near. 
Please continue to check for updates regarding this issue in Omaha.

Record low 26% in US favor handgun ban

A record-low 26% of Americans favor a legal ban on the possession of handguns in the United States other than by police and other authorized people. When Gallup first asked Americans this question in 1959, 60% favored banning handguns. But since 1975, the majority of Americans have opposed such a measure, with opposition around 70% in recent years.

Read About It: Gallup Poll

Feds defend gun sale reporting requirement in court

Gun store owners in southwestern border states argued in federal court Tuesday that the Obama administration cannot require them to report when customers buy multiple high powered rifles.

Read About It: The Associated Press

Pennsylvania: Sunday Hunting Public Hearing Tomorrow!
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Tomorrow, October 27, the state House Game and Fisheries Committee will have a public hearing on House Bill 1760, which would remove the statutory prohibition on Sunday hunting.  This hearing will begin at 9:00 a.m. in Room 140 of the Main Capitol and will include testimony from:
·         Brent Miller, Northeastern States Manager, Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation·         Joel Rotz, State Government Relations Director, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau·         Evan Heusinkveld, Director of State Services with Mike Budzik and Jeff Watkins, U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance·         Curt Ashenfelter, Executive Director, Keystone Trails Association·         Rob Southwick, President, Southwick Associates·         Carl Roe, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Game Commission·         Skip Seifert, Vice President, Pennsylvania Equine Council·         Rick Watts, President, Pennsylvania Chapter with Kathy Davis, Associate Director, Tri-Counties Branch, Quality Deer Management Association
This prohibition on Sunday hunting is an old “blue law” remaining in only six states, and it was enacted in Pennsylvania in the late 1800s.  The addition of this extra weekend day in the field dramatically increases a person’s opportunity to enjoy our hunting heritage.  This will invigorate essential hunter recruitment and retention efforts.  Some are concerned that allowing Sunday hunting will lead more land owners to prohibit all hunting.  This did not occur in other states that have lifted these archaic bans and it won’t happen here.
Sunday hunting will also bring a much-needed economic boost to rural areas.  Comprehensive research from both the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the Pennsylvania Legislative Budget and Finance Committee shows that allowing hunting on Sundays in Pennsylvania would generate a total annual economic impact estimated at $800 million and create approximately 8,000 jobs. 
Please attend the public hearing to show your support for Sunday hunting.  Also, please contact members of the House Game and Fisheries Committee TODAY and urge them to allow Sunday hunting.  Contact information for committee members can be found here.

NRA Files Protest Letter in Opposition of BLM's Resource Management Plan for Recreational Shooting Ban

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The National Rifle Association has filed a letter protesting the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) final resource management plan for Ironwood Forest National Monument that will close the entire monument to recreational shooting.
The NRA and many of its Arizona hunters and shooters were deeply engaged in the planning process when the draft plan for the monument was released for public comment in 2007. Closure of the monument to recreational shooting was protested at public meetings and in written comments, but the BLM ignored the wishes of those who enjoy the historic and important recreational uses of these public lands. NRA’s comments on the draft plan gave it standing to file a formal protest to BLM’s announced decision.
The BLM is justifying its decision to close shooters out of 128,000 acres of public land because it claims that shooting is a “resource-harming” activity. At the same time, the agency will allow other activities to continue, like camping and grazing, that clearly have more impact on the environment. The justification is contained in Appendix I to the decision; a document not available at the time the draft plan was available for public review and comment. As NRA’s protest letter states, “BLM backfilled the evidentiary support for banning shooting” and the public should have had the opportunity to review and comment on the document. Further, the NRA challenges the final decision as not complying with BLM’s own Federal Land Policy and Management Act which requires the agency to perform the required balancing of multiple uses to show, specifically in this case, that the benefit of prohibiting target shooting in the monument outweighs the substantial benefits of target shooting to the American people.
“The BLM has demonstrated from the beginning of the planning process that its intent was to ban recreational shooting in the Ironwood Forest National Monument. No amount of public engagement in support of recreational shooting altered the direction that BLM had decided in advance that it would go,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action. “The BLM is charting the same course in its draft plan for the Sonoran Desert National Monument. Rest assured, that the NRA will protect the interests of shooters and hunters by pursuing whatever legislative or legal means are available.”
Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America's oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. Four million members strong, NRA continues its mission to uphold Second Amendment rights and to advocate enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation's leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the military.

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