Showdown In Washington State: City Considers Taxing Gun Sales

In Tacoma, Washington, a showdown is coming because the city is considering taxing gun sales.

The councilman proposing the measure to be brought up on Tuesday at the city council, Ryan Mello, stated, “I can’t ban assault rifles in the city of Tacoma. I can’t ban certain types of ammo in the city of Tacoma. I can’t require safe storage. There’s a lot I can’t do. The one thing I am not pre-empted from doing is reasonable taxation on firearms and ammunition,” as The Wall Street Journal reported.

The legislation would require a $25 per gun sale to fund violence prevention programs.
The Journal noted, “Opponents of the proposal, which would also collect taxes on ammunition, have said it would force gun shops out of the industrial port city of 215,000. In Seattle, lawmakers projected $300,000 to $500,000 a year in gun taxes, but last year received only $77,642 because gun stores moved away.”
Dan Davies, the owner of Mary’s Pistols in Tacoma, told the Journal, “It’ll put us out of business; there’s no ifs, ands or buts about it. They’re punishing innocent people for the deeds of criminals.”
Lawrence Keane, senior vice president of government relations and public affairs for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, expressed the worries of gun rights advocates, asserting, “Are we concerned that politicians will try to seek their antigun agenda through taxation? Yes, that’s what this is about.”
Despite the fact that gun stores and gun parts makers have warned they will have to leave Tacoma if the tax is implemented, Mello enthused that the new tax would raise between $30,000 and $40,000 annually each year.
The Journal noted that Cook County in Illinois passed a gun tax in 2013, and Seattle followed in 2015. The Cook County government wrote in 2013: “Effective April 1, 2013, as provided in Sections 74-665 thru 74-675, Firearm Tax Ordinance, a tax is imposed on the retail purchase of a firearm in the amount of $25.00 for each firearm purchased … It shall be the duty of every retail dealer to remit and report the tax due on sales of firearms purchased in Cook County on forms prescribed by the Department. After April 1, 2013, the first tax return and payment, if applicable, is due by May 20, 2013. Subsequent returns and payments are due on the 20th day of each month. Returns must be submitted even if no tax is due.”
The city of Seattle wrote in 2015, “The City finds and declares that gun violence directly affects the City and its residents. Therefore, the City intends to exercise its taxing authority, as granted by the Washington State Constitution and as authorized by the Washington State Legislature, to raise general revenue for the City and to use that revenue to provide broad-based public benefits for residents of Seattle related to gun violence by funding programs that promote public safety, prevent gun violence and address in part the cost of gun violence in the City.” The city added, “The tax rate shall be $25 per firearm sold at retail, $.02 per round of ammunition that contains a single projectile that measures .22 caliber or less sold at retail, and $.05 per round of ammunition for all other ammunition sold at retail.”
Showdown In Washington State: City Considers Taxing Gun Sales Showdown In Washington State: City Considers Taxing Gun Sales Reviewed by CUZZ BLUE on October 28, 2019 Rating: 5

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