NEWTOWN, Conn. — The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), the trade association for the firearms industry, today praised the Louisiana House of Representatives for its unanimous passage on Tuesday of Senate Bill 135. Under the legislation, any Louisiana state resident who loses the right to possess firearms under state law will be reported to the State Supreme Court, in turn, will send this information to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) used by all federally licensed firearms retailers when transferring a firearm to an individual.
Already passed unanimously by the State Senate in April, the bill now goes to Gov. Bobby Jindal for signing into law.
“Louisiana legislators clearly understood that the background check system is only as good as the records in the database,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF senior vice president and general counsel. “That is why the firearms industry supports improving the current NICS system by increasing the number of prohibiting records states submit to the NICS system, helping to prevent illegal transfers of firearms to those who are prohibited from owning firearms under current law. Including these missing records will help ensure more accurate and complete background checks. We applaud the members of both houses of the Louisiana State Legislature for their unanimous passage of this important legislation, which truly will help make the state safer.”
In Louisiana a citizen can lose the right to possess a firearm if he or she pleads guilty to a crime by reason of insanity, lacks the mental capacity to stand trial for a crime, is involuntarily committed to an in-patient mental health treatment facility, is convicted of a violent crime, is convicted of a felony violation of drug laws or is convicted of a sexual offense.
The firearms industry has a long record of supporting background checks. NSSF supported such checks prior to passage of the 1993 Brady Act that created a background check system and NICS, which began operation in 1998.