Two years after Henry Pratt shooting, supporters preparing to bring back Illinois gun licensing bill

Two years after the Henry Pratt Co. warehouse shooting in Aurora exposed gaps in the state’s gun licensing system, advocates are preparing to bring back reform legislation. The new versions of the bill are expected to be similar to a previous version that failed to make it out of the legislature. Though lawmakers said there is room for discussion and tweaks on some points, they said three points would be key: requiring residents to provide their fingerprints before obtaining a firearm license; requiring background checks on additional types of gun sales; and providing for action by the Illinois State Police to enforce gun license revocations. “A lot of times in Springfield when we present legislation we’re asked what problem are you trying to solve, and I can’t in recent memory think of a more clear example than what happened in Aurora,” said Ram Villivalam, a Chicago Democrat who intends to sponsor the bill in the Senate, “and how this legislation seeks to address that specific tragedy, and quite frankly seeks to avoid that type of tragedy happening again.” State Sen. Ram Villivalam. (Ram Villivalam / HANDOUT) The earlier reform bill would have required residents to provide their fingerprints before obtaining a firearms license, known as a firearm owner’s identification card, and raised the application fee from $10 for a card valid for 10 years to $20 for a five-year license. Part of the fee would have been earmarked for a new task force to follow up on laws requiring […]

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