Illinois State Police (ISP) officials have finished holding hearings over a confusing and controversial aspect of the state’s new “Assault Weapon” ban.
The new law bans the possession of many different makes and models of firearms and firearm attachments, but it allows current owners to keep them if they were purchased before Jan. 23, 2023, and if the owners fill out an endorsement affidavit.
To implement the affidavit requirement, ISP filed an emergency rule to be reviewed by the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR). Lawmakers on JCAR reached an agreement with the agency to conduct hearings on the proposal before implementation.
The first hearing was held in Springfield on Nov. 2, and the second was in Chicago the following day. The final hearing was held in Caseyville on Nov. 6.
Numerous individuals submitted comments and questions at the hearings, with much of the focus on conflicting and confusing language within the law itself regarding what specific models of firearms and accessories are affected. Many of them were not given answers at the hearing by ISP officials but were instead asked to submit their questions in writing and were promised answers at a later point.
State Senator Sue Rezin says the confusion over the new rule is another reason that ban shouldn’t have been passed in the first place. As a supporter of the 2nd Amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners, she voted against the ban. Senator Rezin is hopeful that the ban will be ruled unconstitutional by federal courts, where several court lawsuits are still pending.