Skip to comments.Gun Makers May Leave if N.Y. and Conn. Pass Microstamping Laws
Posted on 08/27/2012 9:50:41 PM PDT by neverdem
Executives of the historic firearms companies on America's East Coast may not all be young men, but they might want to follow Horace Greeley's advice, anyway. They may want to go west if legislators pass laws that would limit their sales while driving up their costs.
That could be the fate of the Remington Arms Company plant in Ilion, New York, the economic lifeblood of the small New York town lying halfway between Albany and Syracuse. The company's roots in the town go back nearly 200 years, since Eliphalet Remington, Jr. forged his first rifle barrel there. Today the company employs about 1,000 workers in a town with a population of just over 8,000. But the company has suggested, none too subtly, that it may move its Ilion plant to another state if Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state's lawmakers enact gun legislation now under consideration in Albany.
The proposals, the New York Times reported Friday, include a limit in firearms sales of no more than one per month to any one person and a background check of anyone purchasing ammunition. Most troubling to the manufacturers, however, is a plan to require, for the purpose of ballistics identification, the microstamping of every semiautomatic pistol sold in the state. The law would require manufacturers to laser-engrave the gun's make, model, and serial number on the firing pin of each handgun so the information is imprinted on the cartridge casing when the gun is fired. Gun makers say the method is flawed, could easily be defeated, and would require a retooling of the industry that would add what Remington executive Stephen P. Jackson, Jr. called "astronomical sums" to the cost of manufacturing.
"Mandating [f]irearms microstamping will restrict the ability of Remington to expand business in the Empire State," Jackson, the company's chief strategy and acquisition integration officer, wrote in a March 16 letter to Governor Cuomo. "Worse yet, Remington could be forced to reconsider its commitment to the New York market altogether rather than spend the astronomical sums of money needed to completely reconfigure our manufacturing and assembly processes. This would directly impact law enforcement, firearms retailers and consumers throughout New York if not the entire country.
"Of course, passage of microstamping would also hurt New York taxpayers, who would be forced to foot the bill for expensive scanning electron microscopes and software necessary to read the firearms make, model and serial number," Jackson added. "Hurting businesses and tax payers to support a concept that has been proven flawed is ill-conceived."
The firearms industry in Connecticut succeeded in its efforts to defeat similar legislation when it was proposed in that state in 2009. Manufacturers, lawyers, and union and trade group representatives all took aim at the proposed microstamping mandate in a press conference
in March of that year, warning that the bill could threaten the livelihood of some 1,750 workers employed by the gunmakers.
\"This feel-good legislation will do more harm than good," said Carlton Chen, vice president and general counsel with Colt's Manufacturing Company. "Let us not make a mistake, with the unintended consequences of driving businesses and jobs out of Connecticut." Industry spokesmen also cited studies they said proved that the microstamping technology is unreliable as well as costly.
"Further studies are needed on the durability of microstamping marks under various firing conditions and their susceptibility to tampering, as well as on the cost impact for manufacturers and consumers," according to a report from the National Academy of Sciences, one of two studies cited by the firearms manufacturers and supporters. Another, done at the University of California at Davis, found the technology "flawed" and not suited to all guns and ammunition. "Further testing, analysis and evaluation is required," the researchers concluded.
The studies "further validate our longstanding concerns that this technology is unreliable, that it simply does not work as advertised and can and will be easily defeated by criminals in seconds using common household tools," said Lawrence Keane of the National Shooting Sports Foundation.
Gun makers may be looking west at opportunities in Montana, South Dakota, and Idaho, or South to Alabama, all states that are said to be making efforts to persuade gun manufacturers in the East and Midwest to relocate or expand operations in environments where there are fewer gun laws and a more gun-friendly culture. That possibility is being taken seriously in the Mohawk Valley of New York, an area that has lost 11,000 manufacturing jobs since 1990, the Times reported. Ilion is one town in the valley that has seen job growth as Remington has increased production there.
If Remington goes away, "Ilion goes away," said Rusty Brown, a furnace technician at the plant. Diana Bower, who runs a small engineering business with her husband, told the Times that backers of the proposed gun laws don't really understand what that could mean to the town.
"If you don't live here and work here," she said, "you really don't know what it means to say, 'Pass this,' or, 'Pass that.'" But Gov. Cuomo, in an apparent reference to recent deadly shooting sprees in Colorado and Wisconsin, spoke of "current events that have really shaped the psyche of this state." While the state already has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation, "I think there's an appetite for reform, and I think that's a good thing," Cuomo said.
"I think it's ridiculous for [Remington] to argue that they would leave New York," said Jackie Hilly, executive director of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence, which supports a microstamping requirement. "Look, frankly, if we really want to keep jobs in New York, let's invest more money in yogurt," she added, referring to one of the state's growing industries.
That argument does not go down well with state Senator James L. Seward, a Republican whose district includes Ilion. Passing new gun laws "would send a bad signal to this gun manufacturer that they're in a state that's hostile to gun ownership and gun manufacturing," he said.
"It may make people feel good to think they've done something," Seward said, "but at the end of the day, the criminal element and those that go out and do these horrible things, they're going to get their weapons. And the cost could be great for a community like Ilion."
Why would these firms wait? They know that more restrictive state laws are just a matter of time in their current locations.
Good for them.
Don't suggest, don't warn, just do. If the trend on issues they care about is in the wrong direction, convincing the current crop of tyrants does nothing, because in a year or two, you get new tyrants and have to go through it all over again. Add that to the ludicrous income tax laws in NY, and I can't imagine why they're still there in the first place.
I do not understand why these companies have stuck around these leftist states so long
Thank you both for the prompt replies.
FReepmail me if you want on or off my New York ping list.
Microstamping has what, ~60% legibility rate on cheap ammo assuming that it isn’t lacquered or that the stamp isn’t worn or that some thug (the intended target of the legislation) hasn’t taken 30 seconds to use a 50¢ nail file and remove the stamp? Or course, microstamping doesn’t matter if a criminal uses a brass catcher, or polices his brass, or uses a revolver.
And then, if the cops get a match it just indicates the gun used, not the person using it.
...Unless some thug goes and picks up some brass at range and scatters it a crime scene to frame someone.
And according to the ATF, only 19% of the guns used by felons were acquired by gun show, pawn shop or retailer, meaning most of the guns felons use, if microstamped, will point to the rightful owner from whom the thing was stolen.
I’d write a coherent 500 word rant, but this will have to do for the night.
Bluntly, libs don't care if their actions hurt businesses or cause people to lose their jobs or whether the laws they write can even be achieved or if these businesses relocate out of state.
In 2006, the Donkeys in the IL legislature tried to ramrods assault weapons legislation through the House and Senate. The five major gun manufacturers in IL said if this legislation passed, they would move out of state. Those IL manufacturers were: Springfield Armory and ArmaLite, Inc. of Geneseo, Lewis Machine & Tool of Moline, Les Baer Custom, Inc. of Hillsdale, and Rock River Arms Inc. of Colona. [Les Baer Custom did move to LeClaire, IA within a year of this insanity being considered by the legislature. Their new facility opened in the Fall of 2007.]
The legislation died as a result of the combined actions of the NRA, IL State Rifle Assn, Republicans, downstate Democrats, and a whole bunch of p.o.’ed citizen shooters. Since this time the morons in the legislature have considered anti-gun legislation the kiss of death to their political careers. However, eternal vigilance remains the cost of freedom.
Why wait? Leave now!!!!
If they came to Texas, we probably have enough gun lovers to buy all the guns. Plus, we have low taxes and it’s a right to work state. Come on down.
The management of Remington should announce loudly and publicly that if the New York legislature passes this law the company will no longer sell or service any firearm to any Government entity of the State of New York.
They should also announce same policy regarding their ammunition.
Remington’s R&D facility is already located here in Elizabethtown, KY. I’d love to see them move one of their two firearms manufacturing plants here (the other is located in the western part of Kentucky, near Mayfield, and their ammo and component plant is in Arkansas).
GOA has made mistakes,,,, trust me ,,,,I make my living by shooting,,,, sometimes Chris Starke, GOA founder goes overboard and wishes to be someone he's not. "We the people" are the ONLY identity that can make ANY difference. If the ballot box doesn't work than the cartridge box will,,,, IF the true citizens wish for the "CONSTITUTION" to work correctly.
all industries should leave rat states and go somewhere where they would be appreciated.
Everybody needs to go to Texas, AZ and the red states and let the the rats sink in their swamp of scum.
It’s sad that these stupid ideas have to be defeated by threatening to leave the state...
They ought to be defeated by common sense, but this is the world we live in...
four swipes with a fine diamond fingernail file across the face of the firing pin and no microstamp.
Yea, that’s a real stupid idea.
I took mine to the range Friday and put 100 rds through it. I like it but one thing Remington didn’t do is polish the barrels feed ramp. I did it myself but shouldn’t have had to.