ammo taxes

SP Intel Report- November 13, 2015

Chicagoland

DIY Solar Electricity, Window Farming For Beginners Classes From The Green Suite

Nick Conrad and The Green Suite will be putting on DIY Solar Electricity and Window Farming for Beginners classes over the next couple of weeks:

DIY Solar Electricity (class #1)
Wednesday, November 18, 7 to 9 PM
The Green Suite, 3958 N. Fremont, Apt. 3, Chicago
$30 to attend, 2 spots left as I type this

Window Farming For Beginners
Wednesday, December 2, 7 to 9 PM
The Green Suite
$30 to attend, 8 spots left

DIY Solar Electricity (class #2)
Tuesday, December 15, 7 to 9 PM
The Green Suite
$30 to attend, 5 spots left

For more information, head on over to The Green Suite website here.

Cook County Finance Committee Approves Ammunition Tax

It comes as no surprise that Cook County, Illinois, aims to tax law-abiding firearm owners in the county for the actions of criminals- yet again. Earlier this week I mentioned Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle had proposed a tax on ammunition sales in the county. Today, the Cook County Finance Committee approved the proposal. Hal Dardick reported on the Chicago Tribune website tonight:

The Finance Committee on Friday approved a series of other new taxes and fees. They include… A new tax on bullets- 5 cents per round of “centerfire ammunition” and 1 cent per round of “rimfire ammunition”- to raise $320,000 a year for public safety and health programs.

Todd Vandermyde, Illinois lobbyist for the National Rifle Association, said the county could expect a court challenge on the bullet fee, just as it is battling a lawsuit against a $25-per-gun purchase tax that went into effect two years ago.

“It seems interesting that the county wants to go down this road again, because you’ll incur even more litigation with a new suit to deal with this issue,” Vandermyde said, noting the relatively small sum the bullet tax is expected to bring in…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

See you in court? I’d be curious to find out how much that $25-per-gun purchase tax lawsuit has cost Cook County taxpayers to date.

Illinois

Illinois State Rifle Association Warns Of State Gun Control Legislation

Still on the topic of firearms tonight, gun control is on the march here in the “Land of Lincoln.” And the Illinois State Rifle Association has identified new initiatives that threaten the Second Amendment. From the ISRA Thursday Bulletin’s “Executive Director’s Message” for November 12, 2015:

In Springfield we have a couple of troublesome House Resolutions introduced. The first of these is HR0830 (Flowers, D-31, Chicago). HR 0830 calls for President Obama to hold a National Conference on Gun Violence by the end of 2015, in Chicago. This of course would be a blame the law abiding gun owners conference more than anything else. There are only 49 days left this year so it would have to happen quickly.

The next resolution, (Welch, D-7, Hillside), urges the courts, especially the Supreme Court, to adhere to the clear wording of the Second Amendment, being a right afforded to state sponsored militias, not individuals (this is their wording, not mine). What this clearly points out is that the Second Amendment is under attack. If you are not disturbed by this, you should be…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

You can read the entire Thursday Bulletin via the ISRA’s Twitter page here.

International

My thoughts and prayers go out to France this evening. While appalled, I am not shocked to hear of the Paris terror attack however. For a couple of years now I’ve talked about the November 2008 Mumbai, India, slaughter being emulated by terrorists. Almost a year ago to this day I blogged:

Something tells me our friends in Western Europe might suffer a major terrorist attack before a strike against the United States…

And on January 7, 2015, I wrote:

I still predict major terrorist attacks having the potential of inflicting large numbers of casualties will be directed against America and its allies in the future. The possible culprits being several, but including Muslim extremists like Al-Qaeda and its affiliates…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Captain Obvious strikes again? Perhaps. But the notion of a large scale terror attack directed against the United States and/or its allies doesn’t appear to have been registering on the radars of lots of people these days. With a laughable economic “recovery” and plenty of distractions in play by the powers-that-be, who could blame them?

After the carnage in France, America and her allies remain in the crosshairs of the terrorists. Stay safe…

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Dardick, Hal. “Preckwinkle wins hotel tax, declines to rule out future hikes.” Chicago Tribune. 13 Nov. 2015. (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/politics/ct-preckwinkle-hotel-tax-cook-county-met-20151113-story.html). 13 Nov. 2015.

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SP Intel Report- November 10, 2015

Chicagoland

Cook County Ammo Tax Ordinance To Be Heard Friday, November 13

Within yesterday’s SP Intel Report, I mentioned that Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle is proposing a tax on ammunition sales in the county. The National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action reported on its website Monday:

Cook County Board of Commissioners has proposed Ordinance 15-6469, a proposal to impose a tax on ammunition, similar to proposals reported on in the past. This ordinance will be heard on Friday, November 13, at 1:00 p.m., by the Cook County Board of Commissioners Finance Committee.

This proposal would impose a $0.05/cartridge tax on all centerfire ammunition and a $0.01/cartridge tax on all rimfire ammunition, and would therefore penalize law-abiding gun owners for exercising their fundamental right to keep and bear arms. By definition, holders of a valid FOID card are the only persons legally permitted to purchase ammunition in Illinois, and therefore are the only persons subject to this tax – not the criminals responsible for the violence on the streets of Chicago…

That last bit sound familiar to readers of yesterday’s Intel Report? You can read the entire NRA-ILA piece on their website here.

National

Wisconsin Democrats Push To Ban ‘Semiautomatic Assault Weapons’

The push for more gun “control” is alive and well north of the Illinois state line too. From a press release published on the Urban Milwaukee website last Wednesday by Wisconsin State Representative Lisa Subeck (D-Madison):

MADISON –Today, Representative Subeck (D-Madison), along with Representatives Terese Berceau, Melissa Sargent and Chris Taylor, circulated an Assembly bill that would ban the transportation, purchase, possession, or transfer of semiautomatic assault weapons in Wisconsin.

“Our nation has watched as community after community has had to confront the tragedies that occur when weapons designed to kill large numbers of people quickly get into the hands of a dangerous person,” said Representative Lisa Subeck. “No Wisconsin community should ever have to face such a tragedy at the hands of someone armed with a semiautomatic assault weapon.”

Semiautomatic assault weapons are a class of firearms that are designed to kill large numbers of people quickly. They have been used in many high-profile shooting incidents, including the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut; the 2012 Aurora, Colorado movie theater shooting; the 1999 Columbine High School massacre in that state; and the 1993 office shooting at the 101 California Street building in San Francisco.

“I can conceive of no legitimate reason that any citizen should need to own or use a semiautomatic assault weapon,” said Rep. Subeck…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

“Semiautomatic assault weapons.” Haven’t heard of that one before. The word wankers hard at work again. You know, on behalf of gun “safety.” You can read the entire press release on the Urban Milwaukee website here.

Former U.S. Comptroller General David M. Walker Warns Real U.S. Debt Closer To $65 Trillion Than $18 Trillion

It’s been some time since I’ve blogged about former Comptroller General of the United States David M. Walker. Appointed by President Clinton, Walker served as Comptroller General and head of the Government Accountability Office from 1998 to 2008. While at the GAO, Walker warned Americans about the nation’s long-term fiscal challenges as part of the “Fiscal Wake-Up Tour.” Frustrated by Washington’s refusal to confront these challenges, Walker left the public sector on March 12, 2008. I noticed Mr. Walker was back in the headlines this past weekend. Bradford Richardson reported on The Hill website Saturday:

The former U.S. comptroller general says the real U.S. debt is closer to about $65 trillion than the oft-cited figure of $18 trillion.

Dave Walker, who headed the Government Accountability Office (GAO) under Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, said when you add up all of the nation’s unfunded liabilities, the national debt is more than three times the number generally advertised.

“If you end up adding to that $18.5 trillion the unfunded civilian and military pensions and retiree healthcare, the additional underfunding for Social Security, the additional underfunding for Medicare, various commitments and contingencies that the federal government has, the real number is about $65 trillion rather than $18 trillion, and it’s growing automatically absent reforms,” Walker told host John Catsimatidis on “The Cats Roundtable” on New York’s AM-970 in an interview airing Sunday…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Whenever the national debt is brought up, I think about all those Pollyannas who go around saying the debt doesn’t matter. Give it a few more years when Washington and the Fed run out of road to kick the can. Then hold on for dear life

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Sources:

Richardson, Bradford. “Ex-GAO head: US debt is three times more than you think.” The Hill. 7 Nov. 2015. (http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/259476-ex-gao-head-us-debt-is-three-times-more-than-you-think). 9 Nov. 2015.

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Tuesday, November 10th, 2015 Ammunition, Debt Crisis, Entitlements, Firearms, Fiscal Policy, Gun Rights, Health, Hunting, Military, Political Parties, Self-Defense, Shooting Sports, SP Intel Report, Taxes Comments Off on SP Intel Report- November 10, 2015

Democratic Congressmen Push For 20 Percent Federal Excise Tax On Firearms, 50 Percent Tax On Ammo

Back when Danny Davis (D-IL) was my congressman, I don’t recall hearing too much from him- unless he was coming up for re-election.

Well, November 4, 2014, is fast-approaching, and he and another Democratic congressman- William Pascrell (D-NJ)- whose seat is up for election have both decided to take it upon themselves to remind Americans that Democrats stand for gun “control.”

You see, Representatives Davis and Pascrell introduced HR 3018- the “Gun Violence Prevention and Safe Communities Act”- last week, which would hike federal excise taxes on firearms from 10-11 percent up to 20 percent, and hike taxes on ammunition from 11 percent to 50 percent.

I’m guessing a number of pro-gun Democrats, especially those holding office whose seats are also up for election in 2014, are livid right now.

From GovTrack.us this evening:

A BILL

To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to increase the excise tax and special occupational tax in respect of firearms and to increase the transfer tax on any other weapon, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the ‘Gun Violence Prevention and Safe Communities Act of 2013’.

SEC. 2. INCREASE IN EXCISE TAXES RELATING TO FIREARMS.

(a) In General- Section 4181 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended to read as follows:

‘SEC. 4181. IMPOSITION OF TAX.

‘There is hereby imposed upon the sale by the manufacturer, producer, or importer of the following articles a tax equivalent to the specified percent of the price for which so sold:

‘(1) Articles taxable at 20 percent:

‘(A) Pistols.

‘(B) Revolvers.

‘(C) Firearms (other than pistols and revolvers).

‘(D) Any lower frame or receiver for a firearm, whether for a semiautomatic pistol, rifle, or shotgun that is designed to accommodate interchangeable upper receivers.

‘(2) Articles taxable at 50 percent: Shells and cartridges.’.

HR 3018 would also increase the transfer tax on firearms covered under the National Firearms Act (“machine guns,” for example) from $200 to $500 and the transfer tax on all other guns from $5 to $100.

Other blogs/websites are reporting that besides ammo, this legislation hikes just handgun- not long gun- taxes, but based on the following- “Firearms (other than pistols and revolvers)”- I take this to mean rifles and shotguns as well.

Consider the following analysis of the gun “control” legislation by Michael Cohn over at AccountingToday.com:

The bill, known as the Gun Violence Prevention and Safe Communities Act, is co-sponsored by Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr., D-N.J., and Danny Davis, D-Ill. It would increase the excise taxes on firearms from the current range of 10 percent to 11 percent and raise it to 20 percent. The bill would also increase the excise tax on ammunition from 11 percent to 50 percent. It would also increase the Special Occupational Tax on firearm importers, manufacturers and dealers; include assault pistols in the definition of firearms covered under the National Firearms Act; increase the transfer tax on all weapons (except antique guns) covered under the National Firearms Act (excludes most common guns) from $200 to $500 and index to inflation; and increase the transfer tax for any other weapon from $5 to $100 and index to inflation.

All government agencies would be exempted from the tax, including federal, state and local agencies, such as police departments.

Here’s my analysis. The legislation won’t become law. And I think Congressmen Davis and Pascrell know that.

But it did get them some valuable face time for next year’s election.

You can read the entire text of HR 3018 on GovTrack.us here.

By Christopher E. Hill, Editor
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Cohn, Michael. “Congressmen Introduce Bill to Increase Taxes on Guns and Ammunition.” AccountingToday.com. 27 Aug. 2013. (http://www.accountingtoday.com/news/Congressmen-Introduce-Bill-Increase-Taxes-Guns-Ammunition-67848-1.html). 27 Aug. 2013.

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Cook County, Illinois, Sued For New Gun Tax

“You’re welcome to sue. We’ve looked at this and we believe we can survive any challenge.”

-Cook County, Illinois, Board President Toni Preckwinkle, on proposed new taxes on firearm and ammunition purchases within the county, October 18, 2012

On November 9, 2012, the Cook County, Illinois, Board of Commissioners voted 16 to 1 in approving Board President Toni Preckwinkle’s $2.95 billion budget for 2013- and a new $25 per gun “violence tax” on firearm purchases by law-abiding citizens to pay for the carnage caused by violent criminals.

On November 12, I blogged that there was talk of two lawsuits being drawn up against the county as a result of this tax on residents exercising a Constitutional right.

And Thursday night, I came across the following from Cook County Reporter Lisa Donovan on the Chicago Sun-Times website:

A group of Chicago area gun dealers and owners filed a lawsuit Thursday in Cook County Circuit Court, aiming to halt a new $25 tax on every gun purchase in Cook County…

“Proponents of the tax have admitted that its purpose is to curb the number of firearms in circulation. The Tax thus is intended to deter individuals from exercising their fundamental right to keep and bear arms guaranteed by the Second and the Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and… the Illinois Constitution,” the lawsuit states.

The suit claims the tax infringes “on the right of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear, and law-abiding Retailers to sell, arms as guaranteed” by state and local constitutions.

The gun tax is scheduled to go into effect on April 1.

It’s been claimed that the new tax is also a gun registration scheme being carried out by the second most populous county in the United States. On November 23, 2012, I wrote:

From the website of Maxon Shooters Supplies & Indoor Range (one of the gun shops affected) in nearby Des Plaines:

Did you know the “Violence Tax” would give the city of Chicago & Cook County COMPLETE ACCESS to all records of firearm sales, ammunition and etc. This would ALLOW law enforcement agencies to ENTER YOUR HOME to inventory and audit all your firearms & ammunition WITHOUT A WARRANT!

With the recent passage of Cook County Ordinance Number 13-O-13, which requires “persons who own or possess firearms within Cook County to promptly report to the Cook County Sheriff the loss, theft, destruction or transfer of firearms,” gun registration- whether intended or not- is now in effect in the county. From section 58-190, “Report of transferred firearms:”

A person reporting the sale, transfer, inheritance, or other disposition of a firearm shall provide the following information:
(1) Owner name;
(2) Owner address;
(3) Owner Firearm Owner’s Identification Card number;
(4) Date of acquisition;
(5) Place of acquisition;
(6) Means of acquisition;
(7) Firearm type;
(8) Firearm serial number;
(9) Date of sale, transfer, inheritance or other disposition; and
(10) The name, address, and Firearm Owner’s Identification Card number of the transferee.

No doubt about it, gun registration now exists in Cook County, Illinois. And history shows that confiscation often follows.

By Christopher E. Hill, Editor
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Donovan, Lisa. “Gun owners, dealers sue over Cook County’s $25 tax on firearms.” Chicago Sun-Times. 14 Mar. 2013. (http://www.suntimes.com/news/18859382-418/gun-owners-dealers-sue-over-cook-countys-25-tax-on-firearms.html). 16 Mar. 2013.

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Saturday, March 16th, 2013 Ammunition, Firearms, Government, Gun Rights, Hunting, Legal, Main Street, Public Safety, Self-Defense, Shooting Sports, Taxes Comments Off on Cook County, Illinois, Sued For New Gun Tax

Proposed Cook County ‘Violence Tax’ Revised, Lawsuit Threat Remains

“Legal challenge.”

Those are the words I’m hearing these days as it relates to the proposed “violence tax” on purchases of firearms and ammunition by Cook County (Illinois) Board President Toni Preckwinkle. The Chicago Democrat presented her 2013 budget proposal for the nation’s second most populous county back on October 18.

Whoa! This just in from Hal Dardick over on the Chicago Tribune website a short while ago:

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle today dropped plans for a five-cent bullet tax, but still wants to charge a $25 tax on every gun purchase.

The compromise was negotiated over several days with Commissioners John Fritchey and Edwin Reyes, both Chicago Democrats, who had balked at the guns and ammo taxes.

In exchange for their support, Preckwinkle agreed to create a $2 million fund to combat gun violence. Fritchey had proposed dedicating $1.4 million to anti-gun violence efforts. She also agreed to exempt law-enforcement officers from having to pay the tax, which helped convince Reyes to support the plan.

I wonder what Chris “Million Dollar Tax Per Bullet” Rock would say about the change?

I know what he’d say.

Now, as I was saying- lawsuit.

Not only would I not be surprised to hear about one being filed by pro-Second Amendment forces should this tax on guns go on the books (the revision won’t make a difference in their eyes), but also that Cook County ends up paying out more than what’s collected through this scheme to blame law-abiding residents for the actions of criminals.

To give you an idea just how much Cook County taxpayers could be on the hook for because of this proposed tax, one needs only to look at the $399,950 check recently written by the City of Chicago to a gun rights group as reimbursement for legal fees incurred in the McDonald v. Chicago case… which the City of Chicago lost.

According to that Chicago Tribune piece, the newly-revised “violence tax” is projected to bring in only $600,000 into the County’s coffers.

I suspect it would be a lot less than that if the tax is implemented, as common sense dictates residents would just go outside the county to buy a gun.

And the $25 per gun tax is still a business killer, as many, if not all, of the 40-plus gun shops in the county will pack up and move due to their colleagues outside Cook County being able to price their firearms $25 less right off the bat.

There goes much needed sales tax at a time when firearm sales are booming- no pun intended.

And don’t forget the gun shop owners/employees, who will no longer contribute to the local economies around their stores once they leave for greener pastures.

Despite this new revision to President Preckwinkle’s proposed “violence tax,” I suspect pro-Bill of Rights groups are still itching to take Cook County on in the courts.

If I were the County, I’d keep my checkbook someplace handy.

And prepare for taxpayer wrath.

Source:

Dardick, Hal. “Preckwinkle drops bullet tax, keeps gun tax.” Chicago Tribune. 31 Oct. 2012. (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-preckwinkle-drops-bullet-tax-keeps-gun-tax-20121031,0,3962662.story). 31 Oct. 2012.

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Wednesday, October 31st, 2012 Ammunition, Firearms, Government, Gun Rights, Legal, Political Parties, Self-Defense, Shooting Sports, Taxes Comments Off on Proposed Cook County ‘Violence Tax’ Revised, Lawsuit Threat Remains

Cook County’s Proposed ‘Violence Tax’ On Shaky Ground

It’s official. Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle has presented her 2013 budget, and the Chicago Democrat is pushing a $25 tax on every firearm purchase and a nickel-per-bullet tax on ammunition purchases that take place within the county.

To give you an idea of what the proposed “violence tax” would look like as it concerns ammunition, a $22 525-round “value pack” of 22 LR ammo (a very popular purchase) would now cost $48.25, even before sales tax is applied. Like to buy bulk? An $85 2,100-round bulk purchase of the same ammunition would cost more than $200 after taxes.

(Editor’s note: Prices from Cabela’s, which operates a store in the Cook County portion of Hoffman Estates)

Taxing law-abiding gun owners in Cook County for the actions of criminals is bad enough, but to jack up the price of ammunition as to make it unaffordable for many? It will surely be argued that such a tax infringes on residents’ Second Amendment rights.

And President Preckwinkle’s response to a possible lawsuit? Don Babwin wrote on the Yahoo! News website yesterday:

Preckwinkle said she wasn’t worried about a lawsuit.

“You’re welcome to sue,” she said. “We’ve looked at this and we believe we can survive any challenge.”

“You’re welcome to sue.”

I have a feeling many Cook County residents would disagree with Ms. Preckwinkle here. They are becoming more knowledgeable of the dire financial situation the nation’s second most populous county is in, and might not relish the idea of handing over a big chunk of their hard-earned money to gun rights groups and their attorneys à la the City of Chicago and the Village of Oak Park because some gun “control” scheme that wasn’t of their making was found to be unconstitutional by the courts.

At this point, even some Cook County commissioners are questioning whether the proposed tax on guns and ammo will make it into the approved budget. Greg Hinz wrote in his blog yesterday on the Crain’s Chicago Business website:

County Commissioner John Fritchey termed the proposal overall “fundamentally sound and solid and honest.” But he predicted some of the revenue raisers will have trouble and are improperly being posed as social goods…

And the ammunition tax on a standard, 2,100-round box of .22 bullets would boost the price from $85 now to $190, he said, predicting that tax will have particular difficulty passing.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Alejandra Cancino and Hal Dardick mentioned Commissioner Larry Suffredin- a known gun “control” supporter out of Evanston- this morning on the Chicago Tribune website. Cancino and Dardick wrote:

He also said he’s not sure Preckwinkle can muster sufficient votes to pass the guns and ammunition tax because even some Democrats oppose it.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

“Even some Democrats oppose it.”

What does that say about the proposed new tax?

Gun rights groups will have to work quickly to bury the proposed tax, as President Preckwinkle has indicated she’d like to have the budget enacted by mid-November, meaning the measure would cover the 12 months beginning December 1, 2012.

Stay tuned…

Sources:

Babwin, Don. “Official proposes bullet tax to curb Chicago crime.” Yahoo! News. 18 Oct. 2012. (http://news.yahoo.com/official-proposes-bullet-tax-curb-chicago-crime-070551870.html). 19 Oct. 2012.

Hinz, Greg. “Preckwinkle asks new sin, use taxes, but cuts spending and payroll in new budget.” Greg Hinz On Politics. 19 Oct. 2012. (http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20121018/BLOGS02/121019789/preckwinkle-asks-new-sin-use-taxes-but-cuts-spending-and-payroll-in). 19 Oct. 2012.

Cancino, Alejandra and Dardick, Hal. “Preckwinkle budget would raise cigarette, gun taxes.” Chicago Tribune. 19 Oct. 2012. (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/ct-met-preckwinkle-budget-1019-20121019,0,2638703,full.story). 19. Oct. 2012.

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Friday, October 19th, 2012 Ammunition, Deficits, Firearms, Government, Gun Rights, Hunting, Legal, Political Parties, Self-Defense, Shooting Sports, Taxes Comments Off on Cook County’s Proposed ‘Violence Tax’ On Shaky Ground

Cook County’s Proposed ‘Violence Tax’ Calls For $25 On Each Gun Purchase, Nickel-Per-Bullet On Ammo Purchases

Cook County (Illinois) Board President Toni Preckwinkle is scheduled to present her budget proposal for 2013 today, and the word is out she’s pushing that “violence tax” on law-abiding residents which I talked about the other day.

In short, the newswires are saying President Preckwinkle wants a $25 tax on every firearm purchase and a nickel-per-bullet tax on ammunition purchases that take place within the county.

This comes among a whole slew of proposed new and higher taxes and fees in hopes of closing a projected budget gap of $115 million in FY 2013.

Preckwinkle is attempting to justify the “violence tax” by pointing out costs incurred by Cook County’s criminal justice and public health systems as a result of the violence taking place in Chicago and elsewhere in the nation’s second-largest county.

Taxing law-abiding gun owners in Cook County for the actions of criminals.

Makes a whole lot of sense.

Ms. Preckwinkle and her entourage are citing a report from last summer and argue that 29 percent of the guns used in Chicago crimes were purchased legally in the suburbs of Cook County. Dan Hinkel wrote on the Chicago Tribune website on August 27:

A study of guns seized by Chicago police shows that suburban gun shops are a main source of guns used in crimes in the city.

The research shows that some 29 percent of the guns recovered on Chicago’s streets between 2008 and the end of March were bought in the Cook County suburbs.

I wonder how many of the “29 percent” were originally purchased by law-abiding citizens, but were subsequently stolen in robberies? Lots of those taking place in the Chicagoland area these days.

As further justification for this additional tax on guns and ammo, President Preckwinkle is referencing a remark made by comedian Chris Rock. Hal Dardick wrote on the Chicago Tribune website earlier today:

“I make no apology for this,” she added, before making a reference to a popular comedian. “As Chris Rock would say, if it costs a million dollars to society for every gunshot wound, we ought to charge a tax of a million dollars per bullet.”

Chris Rock? Last I heard, the man was a comedian, not a public policy guru.

And nowhere else does such a joke show its short-sightedness than in this particular situation, where many Cook County residents can (and probably) will just purchase their firearms and ammunition outside of the county should the tax become reality.

Good luck collecting that “tax of a million dollars per bullet.”

And consider this. According to an Associated Press piece earlier today:

Preckwinkle declined to speak with The Associated Press ahead of the announcement Thursday, but her spokeswoman Kristen Mack confirmed the details of the plan.

Mack said the office has found no other jurisdiction in the nation that has imposed a tax on bullets, even though several have considered it.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

“No other jurisdiction in the nation that has imposed a tax on bullets.”

Gee, why do you think that is?

Because in addition to what I pointed out above, it eventually dawned on those jurisdictions that a tax on ammunition and/or firearms would result in businesses packing up and leaving to adjacent/other jurisdictions and kill-off much needed revenue.

Not rocket science here.

From Dardick’s piece:

Unlike the cigarette tax, the levies on gambling machines and guns and ammo would raise a relatively small sum: $1.3 million for the gambling tax and $1 million for the guns ‘n ammo tax, according to county projections.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

“1 million for the guns ‘n ammo tax.”

Now that I’d like to see. I wouldn’t be surprised if the 40 or so gun shops and other retailers potentially affected by this tax aren’t already looking at what would need to be done to close up shop in Cook County and move elsewhere.

And about that $1 million. I’d be shocked if the county gets even $1,000 after a couple of years of having this tax in place.

How about sporting goods retailers like Dick’s Sporting Goods? The one by me seems to do brisk business in firearm and ammunition sales. In fact, on the occasions I’ve been at their store, it seems to be the only department that’s not dead these days.

Slap that “violence tax” on them, and I’m guessing big retailers like Dick’s (and Cabela’s out in the Cook County portion of Hoffman Estates) could see their bottom-line hit big time.

I wonder where they are in all this?

It bears repeating here.

It eventually dawned on those jurisdictions that a tax on ammunition and/or firearms would result in businesses packing up and leaving to adjacent/other jurisdictions and kill-off much needed revenue.

Revenue that Cook County can ill-afford to lose these days.

Then there’s the increasing chatter about a lawsuit.

Lisa Donovan wrote on the Chicago Sun-Times website this morning:

While most commissioners who talked to the Sun-Times declined to weigh in on the budget because they wanted more details, one was displeased with the tax on guns and ammunition sold in the city and suburbs.

“I think it’s unnecessary,” the commissioner said. “It’s only going to bring in something like $1 million next year, and we’ll easily spend that in legal fees and trying to collect the money,” the commissioner said, explaining that there is some concern the county will be sued over the tax and collecting it could be a costly venture.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Some concern the county will be sued? Try most likely.

And the Cook County Board President’s take on a potential lawsuit? From that AP piece:

Even Preckwinkle seemed resigned to a legal challenge in her comments to the newspaper board.

“You can’t make decisions based on the basis of whether or not somebody’s going to sue you or then you’ll never do anything,” she said.

The thing is, if the “violence tax” stays in the budget, “whether” will most likely be the case here, and Cook County is clearly not in a financial position these days to fight such a lawsuit.

In the end, President Preckwinkle and Cook County commissioners hopefully use common sense here. Because the word is out that the proposed “violence tax” would generate such a low amount of revenue for Cook County, residents already recognize it’s primarily a ploy to try and convince us that something is being done to stem the violence that plagues Chicago and its suburbs. Still others will figure out the proposed tax is also an attempt by Cook County politicians to push more gun “control” on its residents. As such, it will hardly be a surprise when Cook County is slapped with a lawsuit in defense of the Second Amendment. Throw in the 40-plus businesses that will probably take their much-needed revenue elsewhere (other nearby counties have got to be celebrating their potential good fortune right now), and it becomes conceivable that the proposed tax on guns and ammo might even end up costing Cook County money when all is said and done.

Sources:

Hinkel, Dan. “Study: Suburbs are major source of guns used in Chicago crimes.” Chicago Tribune. 27 Aug. 2012. (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/clout/chi-preckwinkle-wants-1apack-cigarette-tax-hike-20121018,0,6843888.story). 18 Oct. 2012.

Dardick, Hal. “Preckwinkle wants $1-a-pack cigarette tax hike.” Chicago Tribune. 18 Oct. 2012. (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/clout/chi-preckwinkle-wants-1apack-cigarette-tax-hike-20121018,0,6843888.story). 18 Oct. 2012.

“County official proposes bullet tax to curb Chicago crime.” Associated Press. 18 Oct. 2012. (http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/10/18/county-official-proposes-bullet-tax-to-curb-chicago-crime/?test=latestnews). 18 Oct. 2012.

Donovan, Lisa. “Cigarettes, golf all could cost more under Cook County tax plan.” Chicago Sun-Times. 18 Oct. 2012. (http://www.suntimes.com/15816423-761/cigarettes-golf-all-could-cost-more-under-cook-county-tax-plan.html). 18 Oct. 2012.

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Thursday, October 18th, 2012 Ammunition, Crime, Deficits, Firearms, Government, Gun Rights, Hunting, Public Safety, Self-Defense, Shooting Sports, Taxes Comments Off on Cook County’s Proposed ‘Violence Tax’ Calls For $25 On Each Gun Purchase, Nickel-Per-Bullet On Ammo Purchases

Looking At Cook County’s Proposed ‘Violence Tax’

Notable events related to the focus of this blog unfold so fast these days they sometimes don’t register on my radar. Case in point, last week Cook County, Illinois, proposed levying a “violence tax” on the sale of guns and ammo (thanks Devin). Lisa Donovan wrote on the Chicago Sun-Times website back on October 9:

Drawing the ire of the gun lobby, Cook County Board President Preckwinkle is eyeing a violence tax on guns and ammunition sold in the city and suburbs, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned.

Such a tax alone wouldn’t close a $115 million budget gap in 2013, but it could at least funnel money into the county’s $3 billion operation — where roughly two-thirds of the budget pays for both the county’s public health clinics and two hospitals along with the criminal justice system that includes the courts and jail.

“If we were to pursue a tax on something like guns and ammo, clearly that wouldn’t be popular with the [gun lobby] out there, and it may not generate $50 million, but … it is consistent with our commitment to pursuing violence reduction in the city and in the county,” Kurt Summers, Preckwinkle’s chief of staff, said on Monday.

The idea is to curb the number of guns in circulation, he said, citing a report issued last summer showing that nearly one-third of the guns recovered on Chicago’s streets were purchased in suburban gun shops. Other statistics are more dire: Murders in Chicago are up 25 percent this year, according to recent police statistics, and the county jail is filling up — with 9,000-plus inmates, nearing the 10,155 capacity.

Taxing law-abiding gun owners in Cook County for the actions of criminals.

That makes a lot sense.

To hammer this idea home, Steve Chapman wrote in a prominent opinion piece in the Chicago Tribune this past weekend:

Action against the possession and use of guns by violent felons would be a good idea, but the proposal offered by Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle is something else: a penalty on nonviolent citizens who bear no blame for the carnage.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Cook County hasn’t make public just how much firearm and ammunition sales would be taxed under this scheme. However, past ammo tax proposals have asked for between 10 to 50 cents a bullet.

Critics have pointed out that Cook County residents could avoid paying this “violence tax” by purchasing such items outside of the county, thereby hampering the county’s efforts to plug its anticipated budget deficit.

However, as Lisa Donovan noted in a follow-up piece yesterday:

But that so-called violence tax appears to be more message than a substantial money-maker.

Would that be a gun “control” message?

Consider what Chicago’s WLS 890AM reported on their website on October 9:

Preckwinkle shrugged off the idea that law-abiding citizens might be the ones who suffer – even punished — by a tax aimed at paying for the fallout from criminal acts of those who don’t legally possess firearms.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Logic has it that it’s not just “law-abiding” citizens who would be impacted here. Consider this. According to the Chicago radio station, Preckwinkle herself said there are 40 licensed gun shops in the suburbs and several other stores that sell ammunition (one of these “other stores” happens to include Dick’s Sporting Goods, by the way). Should the proposed “violence tax” become a reality, I’m guessing most- if not all- Cook County gun shops will pack up and leave the county.

In a time of booming gun and ammo sales, I can’t help but think this would have a significant negative impact on the County’s coffers.

So, is sending yet another gun “control” message worth chasing 40-plus businesses, all their employees, and all that much-needed revenue out of Cook County?

Neighboring counties probably think it is.

“Do it, Toni. Pull the plug on them. We wouldn’t want those bad, evil gun shops either.” (Salivating)

The Cook County Board President will release her roughly $3 billion budget plan on Thursday.

Stay tuned…

Sources:

Chapman, Steve. “Taxing bullets criminal.” Chicago Tribune. 14 Oct. 2012. (http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-10-14/news/ct-oped-1014-chapman-20121013_1_gun-owners-gun-control-destructive-bullets). 16 Oct. 2012.

Donovan, Lisa. “Cook County mulling violence tax on guns and ammunition.” Chicago Sun-Times. 9 Oct. 2012. (http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/15644719-418/cook-county-mulling-violence-tax-on-guns-and-ammunition.html). 16 Oct. 2012.

Donovan, Lisa. “Mixed reaction from commissioners on Cook County slot machine tax.” Chicago Sun-Times. 15 Oct. 2012. (http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/15774704-418/mixed-reaction-from-commissioners-on-slot-machine-tax.html). 16 Oct. 2012.

“Preckwinkle defends proposal to tax guns, ammo in Cook County.” WLS 890AM. 9 Oct. 2012. (http://www.wlsam.com/Article.asp?id=2549276&spid=). 16 Oct. 2012.

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Tuesday, October 16th, 2012 Ammunition, Crime, Deficits, Firearms, Fiscal Policy, Government, Gun Rights, Health, Public Safety, Taxes Comments Off on Looking At Cook County’s Proposed ‘Violence Tax’
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