Skip to comments.Veterans' Heritage Firearms Act of 2005, H.R. 2088
Posted on 05/07/2005 12:40:33 PM PDT by Richard-SIA
Veterans' Heritage Firearms Act of 2005 (Introduced in House) HR 2088 IH
109th CONGRESS 1st Session H. R. 2088
To provide an amnesty period during which veterans and their family members can register certain firearms in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, and for other purposes.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
May 4, 2005
Mr. GIBBONS (for himself, Mr. OTTER, Mr. KENNEDY of Minnesota, Mr. SESSIONS, Mr. JONES of North Carolina, Mr. MILLER of Florida, Mr. CANNON, Mr. BURTON of Indiana, Mr. GOODE, Mr. KINGSTON, Mr. BRADLEY of New Hampshire, Mr. TERRY, Mr. BAKER, Mr. WHITFIELD, Mr. BARRETT of South Carolina, Mr. BACHUS, Mr. BOOZMAN, Mr. TIBERI, Mr. BISHOP of Utah, Mr. WILSON of South Carolina, Mr. BARTON of Texas, Mr. DUNCAN, Mr. SHUSTER, Mr. HOSTETTLER, Mr. MCCOTTER, Mr. HEFLEY, Mr. ISSA, Mr. SIMPSON, Mr. TANCREDO, Mr. SHIMKUS, Mr. PEARCE, Mr. KING of Iowa, Mr. PETERSON of Pennsylvania, Mr. SALAZAR, Mr. KUHL of New York, Mr. HALL, Mr. MOLLOHAN, Mr. FRANKS of Arizona, Mr. SOUDER, Mr. ROGERS of Alabama, Mr. AKIN, Mr. BURGESS, Mr. CRAMER, Mr. CUNNINGHAM, Mr. BARTLETT of Maryland, Mr. ROSS, Mrs. EMERSON, Mr. HUNTER, Mr. TAYLOR of Mississippi, Mr. DEAL of Georgia, Mr. HERGER, Mr. FEENEY, Mr. LEWIS of Kentucky, and Mr. CALVERT) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on Ways and Means, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned
To provide an amnesty period during which veterans and their family members can register certain firearms in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, 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 `Veterans' Heritage Firearms Act of 2005'. SEC. 2. AMNESTY PERIOD FOR VETERANS TO REGISTER QUALIFYING FIREARMS.
(a) Registration- Subject to such regulations as the Attorney General may prescribe, the applicable veteran or a member of such a veteran's family, who owns and possesses a qualifying firearm, may register such firearm in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record (described in section 5841 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) during the amnesty period.
(b) Qualifying Firearm-
(1) IN GENERAL- For purposes of this section, the term `qualifying firearm' means any firearm which was acquired--
(A) before October 31, 1968; and
(B) by a veteran, while such veteran was a member of the Armed Forces and was stationed outside the continental United States.
(2) PRESUMPTION OF VALIDITY- With respect to any firearm, in the absence of clear and convincing evidence to the contrary the Attorney General shall accept as true and accurate any affidavit, document, or other evidence submitted by an individual to establish that such firearm meets the requirements of paragraph (1).
(c) Hearings- If the Attorney General determines that any individual may not register a firearm under subsection (a) during the amnesty period, the Attorney General, upon the request of such individual, shall--
(1) provide such individual any evidence on which the Attorney General's decision is based; and
(2) promptly hold a hearing to review such determination. (d) Limited Immunity-
(1) CRIMINAL LIABILITY UNDER TITLE 18- Any individual who registers a firearm under subsection (a)--
(A) shall be treated, for purposes of subsections (a)(3) and (o) of section 922 of title 18, United States Code, as having lawfully acquired and possessed the firearm before the date of the enactment of chapter 44 of such title and each of such chapter's provisions; and
(B) shall not be liable under chapter 44 of title 18, United States Code, for any violation of such chapter which--
(i) is based solely on such individual's ownership, possession, transportation, importation, or alteration of such firearm; and
(ii) occurred before or concurrent with such registration.
(2) CRIMINAL LIABILITY UNDER INTERNAL REVENUE CODE- Except as provided in paragraph (3), any individual who registers a firearm under subsection (a) shall not be liable under chapter 53 or 75 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 for any violation of such chapters which relates to such firearm and which occurred before or concurrent with such registration.
(3) TRANSFER TAX LIABILITY- Paragraph (2) shall not affect the liability of any individual for any transfer tax imposed under section 5811 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.
(4) ATTEMPTS TO REGISTER- In the case of an applicable veteran or a member of such a veteran's family who attempts to register a qualifying firearm in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record at a time other than during the amnesty period, paragraphs (1), (2), and (3) shall apply with respect to such individual if such individual surrenders such firearm to a law enforcement agency not later than 30 days after notification by the Attorney General of potential criminal liability for continued possession of the firearm.
(e) Forfeiture- Any firearm registered under subsection (a) shall not be subject to seizure or forfeiture under chapter 53 or 75 of the Internal Revenue Code or chapter 44 of title 18, United States Code, for any violation of such chapters which relates to such firearm and which occurred before or concurrent with such registration.
(f) Notice; Forms; Mailbox Rule-
(1) NOTICE OF AMNESTY PERIOD- The Attorney General shall provide clear printed notices providing information regarding the amnesty period and registering a firearm during such period. To the extent feasible, the Attorney General shall ensure that such notices are posted in post offices, law enforcement buildings, buildings of the Department of Veterans Affairs, and in the businesses of licensed firearms dealers.
(2) FORMS- The Attorney General shall make available any forms necessary for registering a firearm in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record. To the extent feasible, the Attorney General shall make such forms available in the locations referred to in paragraph (1) and through the website for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.
(3) MAILBOX RULE- For purposes of this section, the Attorney General shall treat any form that is postmarked during the amnesty period as received during the amnesty period.
(g) Definitions- For purposes of this section:
(1) AMNESTY PERIOD- The term `amnesty period' means the 90-day period beginning on the date that is 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.
(2) FIREARM- The term `firearm' has the meaning given such term in section 5845 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, except that such term does not include--
(A) any device described in subsection (f)(1) of such section; or
(B) any combination of parts--
(i) designed or intended for use in converting any device into a device described in subparagraph (A); or
(ii) from which a device described in subparagraph (A) may be readily assembled.
(3) APPLICABLE VETERAN- With respect to any firearm, the term `applicable veteran' means the veteran described in subsection (b)(1)(B).
(4) VETERAN- The term `veteran' has the meaning given such term in section 101(2) of title 38, United States Code.
(5) FAMILY- The term `family' means, with respect to a veteran, the grandparents of such veteran, the grandparents of such veteran's spouse, the lineal descendants of such grandparents, and any spouse of such a lineal descendant. A spouse of an individual who is legally separated from such individual under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance shall be treated as such individual's spouse for purposes of this paragraph. Individuals related by the half blood or by legal adoption shall be treated as if they were related by the whole blood for purposes of this paragraph.
(6) CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES- The term `continental United States' means the several States and the District of Columbia, but does not include Alaska or Hawaii.
SEC. 3. TRANSFER OF FIREARMS TO MUSEUMS.
(a) Transfer of Forfeited Firearms to Museums-
(1) IN GENERAL- The Attorney General shall transfer each firearm which has been forfeited to the United States to the first qualified museum that submits a request for such firearm in such form and manner as the Attorney General may specify.
(2) DESTRUCTION OF FORFEITED FIREARMS PROHIBITED- The Attorney General shall not destroy any firearm which has been forfeited to the United States until the end of the 5-year period beginning on the date of such forfeiture.
(3) CATALOGUE OF FIREARMS- With respect to each firearm which is available to be transferred to a museum under paragraph (1), the Attorney General shall, not later than 60 days after the forfeiture of such firearm, publish information which identifies such firearm (including a picture) on the web page of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. Such information shall be available to the public without cost and without restriction.
(4) REGISTRATION OF FIREARMS- Any firearm transferred under paragraph (1) to a qualified museum shall be registered to the transferee in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record (described in section 5841 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986).
(5) FIREARM- For purposes of this subsection, the term `firearm' means any firearm (as defined in section 2(g)(2)) which is treated as a curio or relic under chapter 44 of title 18, United States Code.
(6) QUALIFIED MUSEUM- For purposes of this subsection, the term `qualified museum' means--
(A) any museum owned or operated by a unit of Federal, State, or local government; and
(B) any museum which--
(i) is open to the public;
(ii) is incorporated as not-for-profit corporation under applicable state law;
(iii) may possess a firearm in the collection of the museum under the laws of the State in which the collection of the museum is displayed;
(iv) holds a license under chapter 44 of title 18, United States Code, as a collector of curios or relics; and
(v) certifies to the Attorney General that--
(I) the museum is not engaged in the trade or business of buying or selling firearms,
(II) with respect to the transfer of any firearm under paragraph (1), the museum is not requesting the transfer of such firearm for purpose of sale, and
(III) the museum shall, not later than 90 days after the date on which such museum ceases operations, file an application pursuant to chapter 53 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to transfer any machinegun transferred to the museum under paragraph (1) to an entity or person who may lawfully possess such machinegun under section 922(o) of title 18, United States Code, or abandon such machinegun to Federal, State, or local law enforcement authorities.
(b) Transfer of Machineguns to Museums- Section 922(o)(2) of title 18, United States Code, is amended--
(1) in subparagraph (A), by striking `or' at the end;
(2) by redesignating subparagraph (B) as subparagraph (C); and
(3) by inserting after subparagraph (A) the following new subparagraph:
`(B) a transfer to or by, or possession by, a museum which is open to the public and incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation under applicable State law; or'.
"There is no intent to enable confiscation of ANYTHING that is not already subject to confiscation as contraband. The intent is actually the opposite, to allow veterans and their heirs to keep arms that are currently regarded as contraband".
I don't see it as a negative, but I don't see it as a big deal either. As I see it the only people effected are:"
--Non registered VETERAN owners of fully automatic weapons, who CANNOT now register, pay the annual fee, and keep them EVEN IF they DO live in a state which ALLOWS fully automatic weapons.
That's a good thing, though I don't know how many that effects. IT AFFECTS MANY MORE VETERANS AND HEIRS THAN MOST PEOPLE REALIZE.
--Non registered owners of handguns in a state or locality which either requires registration or bans handgun ownership, with a grandfather clause post 68. That's a good thing, though I don't know how many that effects.
IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE ABOVE.
--"Assault weapon", whatever the state says that is, owners in states that ban them. I'm not that familiar with recent state laws in that regard, if they have grandfather clauses it's a good thing, if they don't which I think is the case in California, the one that comes to mind, it's a nothing. I doubt that effects many people either. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE ABOVE.
There's no doubt in my mind that localities will access the records. NO, EXISTING FEDERAL LAW PREVENTS THAT, THE INFORMATION IS CONFIDENTIAL TAX DATA.
I'd certainly not suggest that people violate gun laws. But this seem to have very little practical impact. IT HAS HUGE PRACTICAL IMPACT FOR VETERANS AND THEIR HEIRS.
As an aside and I'm open to correction, but post (and even during) Vietnam, I don't think the number of "liberated" arms is all that great. I recognize that this act doesn't require that they legally entered the US.
ESTIMATES VARY, BUY EXPECT SOMETHING LIKE 50,000-100,000 IF ALL WERE FOUND AND REGISTERED.
Sorry, I do not know how to do the HTML for quoting and changing fonts.
WHICH previous bills?
The existing "laws" are not bills, they are "Law of the land".
This is only one of several good bills now in congress, but it will never escape from committee without our help, and neither will any other pro-RKBA bill.
I am very disappointed that so many here do not understand this bill, it's intent, or why it's passage is essential to regaining our full RKBA.
I can explain all the above, but it would be a book length post!
For more back-round I suggest studying the topics and post at http://www.nfaoa.org
The ban on Chicago residents owning handguns for example.
A dog of legislation in itself.
Missed one, "pay the annual fee," is a factual error.
The NFA transfer fee of $200 is only paid ONCE per change in ownership.
There is NO "annual" fee for NFA ownership.
This bill is irrelevant to Chicago's feculent ban, it has no effect on non-NFA arms at all.
This Bill ONLY addresses unregistered* arms owned by veterans and their heirs.
Too many here are allowing themselves to be panicked by the word "registration".
* Many of these guns are in fact already lawfully registered, but the NFRTR data-base has been compromised over the years.
Yes, it might aid owners of full auto's, which is what this bill is aimed at. Without the amnesty the weapon remains illegal and cannot be sold. The bill allows those who wish to sell the ability to do so, and those who wish to retain them some peace of mind. Naturally, those who do not wish to register them can ignore it, and remain in the shadows, waitin' fer the day they will be needed.
The lack of knowledge on this issue is stunning...
This bill is a GOOD THING.
This bill is a GOOD THING.
This bill is a GOOD THING.
I will be forced to explain things in detail, just so maybe a few of you will understand. I am going to shear a lot of specifics to make it easier for the laypeople to understand.
First off, Fully Automatic weapons have been federally registered since 1934. This will likely never change.
Each transfer of these weapons requires fingerprints, photographs, signatures from authority figures (usually) and a one time $200 tax.
In 1968, a general 30 day amnesty was declared to allow people who were in posession of unregistered automatic weapons to register them legally. Many WWII, Korea, and Vietnam vets registered their bring-back machineguns to be in accordance with the law.
It is worth mentioning that up to this point, your average police department viewed a WWII veteran with a bring-back Sten gun much in the same way they view jaywalking.
In 1986, as a part of the "Firearms Owners Protection Act" (oddly enough), a moratorium was declared on the registry of new machineguns for civilian sale. The existing ones could be transfered, in full accordance with all federal regulations.
So, those are the dates you need to know for the pop quiz on this issue.
1934, 1968, and 1986.
Here are a few other pertinent details.
Due to the moratorium on registry of new machineguns in 86, the supply of available machineguns was fixed at a certain number. Over the years, as demand increased and people actually learned that it was legal to own a machinegun (albeit with much more paperwork than you or I fill out to purchase a pistol or an AR15) the demand skyrocketed.
Fixed supply + High Demand = Stratospheric prices.
That WWII era BAR that grandpa snuck back is worth upwards of $30,000 as a lawfully registered weapon.
It's worth nothing unregistered.
That Korean Era M3 Grease Gun that uncle has up in his closet might be worth $20,000 as a transferrable, collectable registered machinegun- it's worth nothing unregistered.
As WWII vets make their departure from this world, a number of these weapons are coming to light from attics, closets and basements. The realitives are in posession of an immensely historical and tremeandously valuable object, but they are unable to register it due to the way the law is written.
This law allows these people to register these firearms in accordance with the laws that already govern them.
No, it doesn't mean that you have to go and register your deer rifle.
No, it doesn't mean that "all of a sudden" there is some new registry and we are heading headfirst down the slippery slope...
On the other side of the spectrum- to those against gun ownership, no, this won't affect "crime".
These people already posess these firearms and are doing nothing wrong with them. This bill simply allows them to comply with the law and retain an important family heirloom.
I apologize for getting windy, but I hope I cleared some of this up.
THIS BILL IS A GOOD THING!
PLEASE WRITE YOUR SENATORS ABOUT THIS!
IT TAKES ONE MINUTE TO MAKE A PHONE CALL.
DON'T BE AFRAID. TELL THEM THAT YOU SUPPORT THIS!
THIS BILL IS GOOD FOR US ALL!
Thanks for your time
Because in that chapter of the US Code, "firearm" means:
(1) a shotgun having a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length;
(2) a weapon made from a shotgun if such weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or a barrel or barrels of less than 18 inches in length;
(3) a rifle having a barrel or barrels of less than 16 inches in length;
(4) a weapon made from a rifle if such weapon as modified has an overall length of less than 26 inches or a barrel or barrels of less than 16 inches in length;
(5) any other weapon, as defined in subsection (e);
(6) a machinegun;
(7) any silencer (as defined in section 921 of title 18, United States Code); and (8) a destructive device. The term ''firearm'' shall not include an antique firearm or any device (other than a machinegun or destructive device) which, although designed as a weapon, the Secretary finds by reason of the date of its manufacture, value, design, and other characteristics is primarily a collector's item and is not likely to be used as a weapon.
(b) Machinegun The term ''machinegun'' means any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot, without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger. The term shall also include the frame or receiver of any such weapon, any part designed and intended solely and exclusively, or combination of parts designed and intended, for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, and any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person. ...
e) Any other weapon The term ''any other weapon'' means any weapon or device capable of being concealed on the person from which a shot can be discharged through the energy of an explosive, a pistol or revolver having a barrel with a smooth bore designed or redesigned to fire a fixed shotgun shell, weapons with combination shotgun and rifle barrels 12 inches or more, less than 18 inches in length, from which only a single discharge can be made from either barrel without manual reloading, and shall include any such weapon which may be readily restored to fire. Such term shall not include a pistol or a revolver having a rifled bore, or rifled bores, or weapons designed, made, or intended to be fired from the shoulder and not capable of firing fixed ammunition.
As posted above, this bill would protect veterans and their heirs from the not so tender mercies of the BATFE.
But that registry has existed since 1937, so this bill does not create it. It allows existing guns to be added to the registry, in lieu of letting the BATFE come in and stomp the kittens of their owners. Of course BAFTE has been known to come in shooting when the subject is machine guns. This law would help to keep that from happening to these veterans and their heirs.
I'm disappointed that you don't understand what the current laws are. Bad as the gun grabbers who think 20,000 laws (actually that's an old number, more now) indicate that guns are less regulated than teddy bears.
To repeat, this is not a new law, but rather an improvement and clarification of existing law, albeit one that is completely and totally unconstitutional.
Now that would be the right thing to do, but it's not going to happen anytime soon. The only way those laws are going away in our lifetimes is for the Supreme Court to get off it's a$$, hear a case involving the National Firearms Act and declare the whole shebang to be the violation of the second amendment that it clearly is. However that's not much more likely than Congress and a President doing it.
Which shows that you still don't understand the situation. If they dropped the "previous bills", that is the 1934 National Firearms Act, and the provision of the Firearms Owners Protection Act (slipped in at literally the last moment) which banned further registrations of newly manufactured or imported machine guns, there would be no need for this bill. And Jefferson, Franklin, Madison and others might stop spinning in their graves. (I've heard tell that Philadelphia gets a good proportion of it's electricity from Franklin's twirling).
My father brought back a Japanese rifle from Guadalcanal in 1945, if he wills it to me and it is not registered, what may happen?
Welcome to FR.
No, this is NOT a good thing.
It will be 'reinterpreted', just like all the other bills measures and addendums.
Wanna try to tell me OTHERWISE?
If it is a machinegun or has a barrel shorter than 16 inches, if you get caught with it, you will go to FEDERAL PRISON and lose your right to vote and to own any kind of firearm.
If it is not fully automatic or has a barrel 16" or longer, then nothing, no big deal.
Look, before Richard explained what the bill did, you were railing against it and had *NO IDEA WHAT IT DID*. Not only no idea, but you believed it did something almost completely opposite of what it DOES do.
Our rights were taken away by incrementialism (Fabianism) and that is OUR BEST STRATEGY for getting them back.
THE BILL IS A GOOD THING. Of course I'd love to see the machinegun registry re-opened to EVERYONE but every little thing we can do is good. This bill was written by OUR SIDE, FOR US.
I read it, and it has lots of qiggle room.
Gun laws by nature are not a good idea, and this one has holes in it.
Take anotehr look, if you can't see them, you're blind.
Welcome to FR by the way.
You clearly still do not understand the CONTEXT of the bill, which self limits it's scope.
It is an EXCELLENT bill, not nearly as open and far reaching as I would like, but a great start of cleaning up the NFRTR mess.
Perhaps we are blind.
Please explain the wiggle room, point-by-point.
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