Skip to comments.Minnesota Anti-Gun Groups Lose Names
Posted on 05/05/2002 10:33:21 PM PDT by jdege
May 5 Update -- The Minnesota Gun Owners Civil Rights Alliance (GOCRA) just took exclusive ownership of the corporate names of the two biggest anti-gun groups in the state: Citizens for a Safer Minnesota and Citizens for a Safer Minnesota Education Fund.
Not only are those wonderful names for new organizations that would truly make Minnesota safer -- by enlarging gun rights, not destroying them -- the anti-gunners who spent a lot of time, money and energy building up those names can no longer use them. Nor can they use signs, stationery or other materials using those names.
That shut down the groups' operations at a political convention this weekend and promises to give a great deal of grief to the groups, their officers, and their contributors.
Further, anyone who has contributed in the last three years to the IRS 501(c)(3) tax-deductible CSM Education Fund may have to file an amended tax return -- including American For Safe Government Andrew McKelvey and his personal anti-gun group, a heavy contributor to anti-gunners across the country.
The Minnesota anti-gun organizations had failed to file their annual non-profit corporation registration so their corporations had been automatically dissolved by the Secretary of State's Office. That terminated the existence of their corporate entities and made the business names available for the taking.
GOCRA took the name of the lobbying organization by incorporating a new subsidiary corporation with the now-available former name of the anti- gun group. That required only a one page fill-in-the-blank form available from the Secretary of State's Office and a $135 filing fee. The form was downloaded from the SOS web page.
The gun organization also got the name of the anti-gunner's tax- deductible foundation by forming another corporation which they intend to qualify under Internal Revenue Code Sec. 501(c)(3).
While they were at it, the pro-gun group reserved for 12 months other names they thought the anti-gunners might want to adopt (which costs less than incorporating).
The founders of GOCRA, David Gross and Joe Olson, both lawyers, were close friends and allies on the NRA Board until we were purged in the post-Heston era. But they're very much still in the fight; I attended an meeting with Joe and other grass roots activists last week during the Reno NRA meetings.
Joe and David discovered this opportunity by visiting the Minnesota Secretary of State's web site and checking into whether their own corporations and those of the anti-gunners were in good standing. It didn't hurt that Joe is a law professor who specializes in corporate and tax law.
Neither of the anti-gunner's former corporations were in good standing; both were listed as "inactive" for they hadn't filed their annual registration for several years. The Secretary of State's on-line list of dissolved corporations, which only went back 2 years, showed that the anti- gun lobbying arm had been automatically dissolved 2 weeks ago.
The educational fund appeared to have lapsed even earlier so our guys called up the corporations division at the SOS office and asked. Sure enough, that corporation had been automatically dissolved 3 years ago. Friday morning GOCRA filed the short-form Articles of Incorporation of two new corporations with those names.
Bang, the names were theirs.
The Minnesota Secretary of State's office routinely sends out pre- printed annual report forms to all corporations, so some anti-gunner dropped the ball. Big time.
As good citizens should do, the IRS was notified that the anti- gunner's tax exempt entity didn't exist and hadn't existed for three years. For those tax years, it owes taxes on all its contributions and on the grants from HCI, AGS, etc. Its individual and corporate donors who deducted their contributions will have to file amended returns deleting those so-called "charitable" deductions and paying additional taxes.
The anti-gun group compounded their problems by engaging in a neat little trick, as explained on their web site, of taking ALL contributions above their $35 a year dues, automatically shifting the remainder to the tax-deductible fund, and issuing a tax deduction receipt. If they had only paid as much attention to the filing of their annual forms . . ..
How would your club or organization like to have to notify all of your contributors of this situation? Better check your own organization's status immediately -- although very few gun groups have formed (c)(3) charitable organizations.
The two new pro-gun corporations served the anti-gunners with written demands to cease and desist from using the new corporations' business names on stationary, pamphlets, web sites, etc.
They did this as soon as possible after incorporating. That just happened to be at this weekend's state Democrat-Farmer-Labor Convention. After a while, the anti-gun group packed up their booth and left.
Not bad for 3 days work. My hat's off to Joe and David.
As my friends pointed out in an email: "Most states have non- profit corporations statutes with annual registration reguirements and automatic dissolution after some period. An opportunity like this could exist in any state. Get on the state web page this afternoon (it's on 24/7)."
Can't tell what you might find. Guerilla warfare can be fun.
This is nearly too good to be true.HeHeee.;o)
"And please don't let the door slap you in the a** on the way out, boys !"
Joe and David -- Nice work !
It'll be a tax-exempt, charitable organization, and since we won't lie the way the gun-grabbers do, we'll have to keep out of politics.
Maybe we'll offer free firearms safety training classes for inner city school kids.
In other words, something that will really help.
Stay Safe ! !
Bwhahahahahahhahahahahahha. This just made my day. Dummies.
I always take a look at MPPGV's PAC every filing period. Right now, they have $35 in their PAC. I guess Andrew McKelvey's funds have dried up some.
"Revenge is never stupid darling -- it's the single most satisfying feeling in the world." - J.R. Ewing, philosopher, businessman.