Skip to comments.Cook County mulling violence tax on guns and ammunition
Posted on 10/09/2012 12:26:55 PM PDT by neverdem
Cook County Reporter email@example.com
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 wouldnt close a $115 million budget gap in 2013, but it could at least funnel money into the countys $3 billion operation where roughly two-thirds of the budget pays for both the countys 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 wouldnt 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, Preckwinkles 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 Chicagos 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.
Along with the tragic human toll, gun violence takes a toll on government coffers.
It impacts law enforcement, both at the city and the county [levels]. It impacts the courtrooms, the public defender and states attorney that are in there, the judges that are in there, the clerk of the court that has to sit there, the sheriffs deputies that are in that courtroom and it impacts the jail the folks that are sitting there at $143 a day, he said, referring to the daily cost of keeping an inmate behind bars.
Now on top of that, if a person is shot and wounded, they end up more than likely in a Level 1 trauma Center like Stroger Hospital, he said, of the main taxpayer-funded county hospital.
The cost to treat a gunshot victim, without insurance, is pegged at $52,000, Summers said. And 70 percent of gunshot victims dont have health insurance, he says.
Just how much Preckwinkle would tax guns and ammunition is unclear. But consumers would be on the hook for it with guns and ammunition dealers responsible for remitting the tax monthly to the countys Revenue Department.
Back in 2007, then Cook County Commissioner Roberto Maldonado now a Chicago alderman pushed for a 10-cents-a-bullet tax, and even proposed charging 50 cents, before the proposal was ultimately shot down.
But the gun lobby has vowed to push back hard on Preckwinkles idea.
This is just another example of the blame game Chicago and Cook County has a gun violence problem, Chicagos got a high high school drop-out rate, theyve got a drug problem, theyve got a gang problem, but they want to make legal gun owners, guys like me, the scapegoat, said Todd Vandermyde a National Rifle Association lobbyist who works in Springfield.
He said this is an unfair tax on a constitutional right that will hurt the poor.
It is another way to enact a Jim Crow law and keep people from exercising their constitutional right, he said.
All youre doing is jacking up the price of guns and ammunition for someone who can least afford it, he said. The problem with something like this is that youre hurting people who dont have the ability to get out of Cook County. So if you have someone in Englewood, they have to venture out to DuPage County, to Will County? I dont think so.
While no such tax exists in Illinois, experts say, Tennessee has an ammunition tax.
Right now, guns and ammunition sold across the country are subject to a federal excise tax that funds conservation projects. In Illinois, the local sales tax rate is applied to such purchases.
Two bills are in the hopper in the Illinois state Legislature HB5167 and HB1274 that would create an explicit tax on ammunition. Rep. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago) and former Rep. and now Ald. Will Burns (4th) a Preckwinkle ally who holds her old aldermanic seat are the sponsors of this legislation, but both bills are currently parked in the House Rules Committee.
Preckwinkle will announce her 2013 spending plan next week. Initially, she forecast a $267 million deficit, but that has fallen to $115 million. The $152 million wiped off the books comes from a combination of cost-cutting including several hundred vacant jobs on the books and more revenues, including the hope they can put poor and uninsured patients on the Medicaid rolls next year as part of an early enrollment plan under the Affordable Health Care Act.
Contributing: Dave McKinney
I don’t buy ammo or guns in IL anyway.
Let’s put a violence tax on socialists.
After all, it was Mao that attributed all legitimate power to the gun barrel.
If I lived there I’d buy out of county.
Seems to me like Cook County ought to be figuring out how to get rid of its uninsured freeloading gangsters that get shot instead of taxing the hell out of citizens that want to protect their lives. If someone aksed me if I’d spend $52 grand to treat a gangbanger gunshot victim, I’d point to the dumpster.
When they tax cigarettes, I don’t object........(/sarc)
A brain surgeon in the works, obviously.
(Is her named SPELLED right? I see a problem with one of the vowels. :) )
can they even do that in IL?
Are there even any gun stores left in Cook county?
Wow 19 yrs on the Council.
Can you imagine all the graft, corruption, and gravy she’s sucked up?
As the impostor in the Whie House demonestrated, the Government can do as they damn well please. Who will stop them?
How about a stupidity tax for politicians who tell us that “we can’t arrest our way out of current crime rates”?
These are the same idiots who want to disarm law abiding citizens and insist that banning God from the public square, will improve our culture.
with a name like Preckwinkle, you will get your azz kicked more than Waxman with big ears a funny nose.
They already have a program like that-- they send them to Dubuque, where the Agenda 21 movers and shakers make sure the Section 8 housing stays at capacity.
I’ll bet there are Cook CO elites carrying secretly.
Sure. If you also impose a $50 per copy tax on rap music that glorifies violence and a $100 per ticket/per copy tax on movies that glorify violence. And a $100,000 per episode/per showing tax on videos and television shows that glorify violence.
Oh, wait, you think that’s wrong because it violates a civil right? Geee.....
I guess a prostitution tax on all vaginas is next.
If I lived in their jurisdiction, I would happily spend more on gas to buy where they didn't get extra tax money from the purchase, rather than allow these anti-freedom crooks to get money from my shooting hobby.
Pretty funny. I live in a dry county. There are liquor stores on the borders with neighboring counties that do a very brisk business.
Of course not. That would be as illegal as bulldozing an airport in the middle of the night.
Will the Police departments be exempt?
How is this not unequal protection under the law?
Kennesaw GA _requires_ every home be armed. Violence is nigh unto unheard of.
How about a stupidity tax for voters who elect communists?
WGN Noon news did a Poll on this.
MIDDAY NEWS POLL: Do you agree with the proposal to tax guns and ammunition in Cook County?
MORNING NEWS POLL: Do you agree with the proposal to tax guns and ammo in Cook County?
How about taxing the perps?
Then you might have a bigger incentive to actually pursue & find them!!!
Libs say a YouTube can cause violence.
Tax Hollywood violence.
Then there needs to be a corruption tax on holding public office.
Dont for get these other quotes from other socialist for the government monopoly on the use of force:
We want them registered Nancy Pelosi
A system of licensing and registration is the perfect device to deny gun ownership to the bourgeoisie. Lenin
Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas. Joseph Stalin
One man with a gun can control 100 without one. Lenin
New civility: Obama supporters threaten to riot if Romney wins; Update: Deleted tweets http://twitchy.com/2012/10/09/new-civility-obama-supporters-threaten-to-riot-if-romney-wins/djais @djaissy92 If Romney wins.... We gon start a riot !!!Breâ @SoBossy_ If Romney win imma start a riot !!!
Raise taxes in areas plagued by gang/drug violence, as an incentive to SNITCH and toss these thugs in jail where they belong!
You can bet that there will be a tax like this nationwide if Obama gets a second term.It will be a surtax for gun violence to support health care.The SCOTUS has already given them the green light for this.
This also - if you use police services more, you should have to pay more.
And Stalin who starved and otherwise exterminated tens of millions of his own countrymen. And Hitler who murdered further millions. And on, and on, and on....