Background Check Bill Veto Overridden

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Yesterday, the House narrowly voted to override Governor Hogan's veto of 2020's SB208, which criminalizes the private sale and transfer of long guns. 85 votes were needed to override and 88 unwisely chose to do so. Now that SB208 has been overridden in both chambers, the bill will go into effect in 30 days (on March 13, 2021). Why? Article II, Section 17 (d) of the Maryland Constitution states:
  • Any Bill vetoed by the Governor shall be returned to the House in which it originated immediately after the House has organized at the next regular or special session of the General Assembly. The Bill may then be reconsidered according to the procedure specified in this section. Any Bill enacted over the veto of the Governor, or any Bill which shall become law as the result of the failure of the Governor to act within the time specified, shall take effect 30 days after the Governor's veto is over-ridden, or on the date specified in the Bill, whichever is later.
Starting on March 13th, 2021, private sales and permanent transfers between residents of long guns will need to be facilitated by an FFL at your cost. To be clear, this bill does not require licensing or involve the Maryland State Police. You can thank our prior advocacy for that. Rather, it makes it a criminal act to permanently transfer ownership of a long gun to another unless a NICS check is performed by an FFL. The new law DOES NOT APPLY to transfers in ANY of these circumstances:
  • Between "immediate family members" (defined as a spouse, a parent, a stepparent, a grandparent, a stepgrandparent, an aunt, an uncle, a sibling, a stepsibling, a child, a stepchild, a grandchild, a stepgrandchild, a niece, or a nephew, as related by blood or marriage)
  • Involving law enforcement and military acting within the scope of their official duties
  • Between licensed collectors of Curio and Relics
  • Of an unserviceable long gun sold, rented, or transferred as a curio or museum piece
  • Between those with demonstrable religious beliefs against having photographs taken of them and who does not possess a license or an identification card of any kind with photographic identification
  • A transfer that occurs by operation of law on the death of a person for whom the transferee is an executor, an administrator, a trustee, or a personal representative of an estate or a trust created in a will
  • A temporary gratuitous loan of a rifle or shotgun (unless the transferor has reasonable cause to believe that the transferee is a prohibited person).
Join MSI in thanking every lawmaker who voted to sustain Governor Hogan's veto (and to him for his veto!). Special thanks go to Senators Hough, Ready, Cassilly, Carozza, and Simonaire, and Delegates Hornberger, Beitzel, Arikan, Cox, Shoemaker, Ghrist, Mautz, and Buckel for all eloquently speaking in support of Marylanders rights. All of the votes are recorded in our tracker HERE.  We encourage everyone to communicate (civilly) with their representatives on how they feel about the representative's vote. 

Advocacy isn't limited to the 90 days our legislature meets. It is a constant effort and those who do not understand gun ownership or the rights of others do not sleep. Educate your lawmakers. Educate your friends. Advocacy does make a difference.  Don't be a free rider!

The General Assembly is still in session! You can keep track of all the gun bills at tinyurl.com/guntracker.

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The Dangers of Maryland's Carry Laws

On August 12, 2021, Maryland's highest court, the Court of Appeals, ruled that a violation of Md. Criminal Law § 4-203(a)(1)(i) is a strict liability crime. Put simply, if one has a handgun on or about them and is not authorized to do so, they are guilty of violating the law. The case is Lawrence v. State, 471 Md. 101 (2021).

Section 4-203 is the statute that broadly prohibits the wear, carry, or transport of handguns within the State. Specifically, § 4-203(a)(1)(i) states:

 (a)    (1)    Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, a person may not:

            (i)    wear, carry, or transport a handgun, whether concealed or open, on or about the person;

There are a few exceptions to this ban (found in subsection (b) of Section 4-203), such as one having a Maryland Wear and Carry Permit, possession in the home or business (by the business owner), or when transporting an unloaded handgun (kept in an enclosed case or enclosed holster) between a gun shop and one's residence or from their residence to a gun range. But, outside these sharply limited exceptions set out in subsection (b), the passage above otherwise broadly criminalizes having a pistol on (or about) the person. 

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MSI v. Montgomery County Update

On June 16, 2021, we filed an emergency motion for partial summary judgment on three of our counts against Montgomery County's enactment of Bill 4-21. The motion seeks to enjoin the County from enforcing their new illegal laws which will go into effect on July 16th without action from the Court. Find the motion HERE and the memorandum in support HERE. As we have stated previously, we will not sit idle while politicians make criminals of ordinary and law-abiding residents. You can learn more and find updates about this case at tinyurl.com/msivmoco.

Taking these challenges is not possible without your support! Consider becoming a member of MSI, donating, or wearing MSI apparel or picking up our accessories.

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Contact Info

Headquarters:

Maryland Shall Issue®, Inc.
9613 Harford Rd
Ste C #1015
Baltimore, MD 21234-2150

Phone:  410-849-9197
Email: 
Web:   www.marylandshallissue.org