* The Illinois Supreme court stepped in and declared yesterday that out-of-staters do not need a FOID card if they travel in Illinois with their guns. The non-residents couldn’t get a FOID card anyway, since only Illinois residents qualify. They still need to make sure their guns are permitted in their home states, however…
The case stems from an incident in 2005 when a Indiana man was arrested for a having a gun in a closed backseat armrest in his car.
He was charged with felony unlawful use of a weapon because he didn’t have a FOID card and he didn’t have the gun in a case.
The court ruled that since he had a permit to carry a concealed weapon in Indiana he didn’t need a FOID card as well.
“As the majority points out, if we were to strictly apply the FOID card requirement … nonresidents whose weapons are unloaded and enclosed in a case but who do not have an Illinois FOID card would be guilty of a felony,” Supreme Court Justice Rita Garman wrote.
For the southern Illinois city of Sparta, the ruling was a matter of economic survival. Sparta is home to the $50 million World Shooting & Recreational Complex. Chris Hespen works for the complex and said it hosted about 300 shooting events during 2010.
During its biggest event, the Armature Trapshooting Association’s Grand American, the complex saw sport shooters from across the nation and from 17 countries, according to Hespen. He said Thursday’s ruling diverted an economic disaster.
“It would have been detrimental and crippling,” Hespen said. “This facility here, yeah we offer day use and walk-in outdoor sportsmen an opportunity to recreationally shoot, but this facility is written and built for tournaments and competitive shooting events.”
* Earlier this week, the House voted down a bill that some saw as sort of a test vote for concealed carry…
House lawmakers [Wednesday] defeated a measure that would have taken away Chicago’s ability to regulate how people store guns, a prelude to an expected spring showdown over a push to allow people to carry concealed weapons.
The debate put on display the Capitol’s traditional regional fight over gun rights and gun control, with conservative suburbanites and downstate lawmakers wanting to expand rights and Chicago-area Democrats wanting to restrict access to weapons. […]
The state legislation, sponsored by freshman Rep. Wayne Rosenthal, R-Morrisonville, have specifically given the state exclusive power to regulate firearms and disallow Chicago and other larger cities with home-rule power from establishing their own restrictions. Rosenthal maintained there should be a “consistent standard” statewide. […]
The House vote was 61-48, which is normally enough to pass a bill. But the gun measure needed 71 votes because it would have superseded the authority of home-rule powers of Chicago and other large communities in Illinois.
Todd Vandermyde with the NRA explained to me that they were missing 5 votes Wednesday and said the two issues were different with “different players.” One might assume that they didn’t press members as hard, either, because they want that concealed carry bill to pass. Even so, that’s not a great roll call, even if you add in those missing five members.
* Campers, you know I love you all dearly, each and every one of you. But these gun-related comment threads are driving me a little batty. Please, try your very best not to use stale, ready-made talking points. Be original. And be kind to each other. Also, it’s Friday. Let’s have a little peace. Thanks.