In an effort to reduce gun trafficking stemming from Illinois gun dealers, State Sen. Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst) negotiated several significant revisions to a Gun Dealer Safety measure, which passed the Senate on May 16—one day after a bipartisan group of legislators, including Nybo, announced their support.
“We have refocused the gun dealer safety legislation to address our most important priorities—requiring gun dealers to follow common-sense safety practices and cracking down on businesses that are enabling or engaging in gun trafficking, said Nybo. "And we have done so without creating too much of a burden for local businesses."
The original gun dealer licensing concerned many legislators due to the amount of time, money and resources it would require for businesses to apply for a license and comply with the new regulations—as well as the strain it would place on the State to fulfill all of its new responsibilities.
Nybo worked with the chief sponsor, State Sen. Don Harmon (D-Oak Park), to craft a revised version of the Gun Dealer License Certification Act and the Combating Illegal Gun Trafficking Act that ensures gun dealers operate safely—but removes the bureaucratic red tape and high fees included in the previous provisions that Nybo said would have hurt smaller businesses.
“At its heart, this is a public safety measure—and an answer to the call from our constituents to ensure businesses are only selling firearms to individuals who are legally permitted to carry them,” said Nybo. “Senate Bill 337 is an impactful initiative and compromise that both sides of the aisle can support, and I encourage my colleagues in the House to approve the proposal and push it to the Governor for signing.”
“I want to thank Senator Nybo for working with the Illinois Gun Violence Prevention Coalition to pass responsible bipartisan policy that will hold corrupt gun dealers accountable,” said Kathleen Sances, President and CEO of the Gun Violence Prevention PAC. “With 4,000 illegal guns each year traced to gun dealers in Illinois, regulating them will help ensure that guns sold here don’t end up in the wrong hands. This bill levels the playing field for all dealers, and most importantly, it will save hundreds of lives across Illinois.”
Senate Bill 337 will now move to the House of Representatives for consideration.