Charged To Own Ammo? Here’s Where It May Happen

It’s true – you may soon have to pay a fee to own new ammunition. According to a Guns.com article, California may soon be charging ammunition purchasers a $5 fee for all ammo sales moving forward. And this could really frustrate a lot of gun owners looking to stock up on their favorite cartridges.

However, it’s not just the fee that’s changing. In fact, the California Department of Justice is proposing a whole new set of regulations that will affect ammo vendor licensing. Once they go into effect, these regulations will affect all of California vendor licensing for ammunition. The regulations will begin in the year 2018.

According to Guns.com:

Part of Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom’s successful “Safety for All” voter referendum, Proposition 63 requires background checks prior to all ammunition sales. Voters approved the initiative 63-37 in the general election last fall and DOJ was required to implement the regulations by July 1 to take effect on Jan. 1, 2018, so that vendors could begin the process of applying for licenses. However, as pointed out by the California Rifle and Pistol Association, theproposed regs were only submitted quietly last week and still need lengthy public comment before they can take effect.

Among Prop. 63’s more rigid requirements would be that the sale of ammo without a license carries a misdemeanor for any business or person selling more than 500 rounds per month. Internet sales, unless they use a local licensed ammo vendor as a middleman, would be illegal. Vendors, who would have to get a $198 annual permit, can charge a purchaser a fee of up to $5 per sale on cartridges immediately available and additional storage fees for special orders. This is in addition to any DOJ fee.

Further, ammo would have to be displayed in a way that it is not accessible to the public, such as in a locked case or cabinet. Violations could result in the vendor having their license suspended for six months, or revoked with at least a year passing before another could be applied for.

Those who want to purchase ammunition would need to get a four-year $50 permit, which would require a background check, for which rules are being formulated to implement in 2019. Eventually, records on all sales and transfers of ownership of ammunition will be electronically transmitted to DOJ, though the means to do so currently are nonexistent.

The proposed regs come as California Attorney General Xavier Becerra’s office has suffered the twin rejections of initial plans going after once-grandfathered “pre-ban” magazines by a federal court while the California Office of Administrative Law blocked proposed new rules redefining “assault weapons” and bullet buttons.

There will be a public hearing to discuss these changes in ammunition vendor licensing on August 28th, 2017. The hearing will take place in Sacramento, California at the Resources Building Auditorium. However, California residents may also e-mail their comments, questions and concerns to the following email address: [email protected] They may also fax any concerns and/or information to the following number: (916) 227-1068.

However, the regulations are not going to take into effect without a fight. For example, certain gun rights groups are looking to challenge the implementation of the proposed regulations. These challenges, if taken to court, will likely slow up the process of the regulations’ implementation.