Cook County Board Poised to Impose Ammo Tax

by
posted on November 13, 2015
si-news-2015-5-28-15.jpg (31)

The Cook County Board of Commissioners was scheduled to act upon Ordinance 15-6469, which would mandate a tax of five cents per each centerfire round and one cent per rimfire round. Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle said earlier this week she thought there were sufficient votes within the 17-member board to approve the measure at its Nov. 13 session. 

Three years ago this month, on Nov. 9 2102, the Cook County Commission approved a tax of $25 on each gun sold in the county, as part of the county’s 2013 budget plan. An ammunition tax was discussed as part of that original ordinance, but was dropped from the final version. 

At that time Board President Preckwinkle depicted the ammo surcharge as a “violence tax.” 

The 2012 ordinance, like the one proposed to the Commission this week, was brought forth by Cook County Commissioner Richard R. Boykin. 

“We should tax bullets just as we do guns to help government address the costs of violence. Currently taxpayers who do not purchase a bullet pay the full cost of gun violence,” stated an op-ed in the Chicago Sun-Times attributed jointly to Boykin and Preckwinkle. “We believe this is a fair measure, to make the cost of the product more accurately reflect the costs it has on the county and society. It’s no different than taxing alcohol or tobacco.” 

Any inference that the measure would somehow stem gun crime in this notoriously violent city is indeed ambiguous, as those who legally purchase firearms and ammunition in Illinois must possess a valid Firearm Owners Identification (FPID) card issued by the state police. 

If approved, Cook County would join the city of Seattle, Wash, which instituted a tax on firearms and ammunition earlier this year. That city is currently facing a lawsuit filed by firearms owners and guns rights organizations, charges that such discriminatory taxes are unconstitutional. 

If Cook County follows Seattle’s lead, it most certainly will face costly legal challenges to its action.

Latest

Safariland tiger stripe duty holster
Safariland tiger stripe duty holster

First Look: Safariland Tiger Stripe Holsters

Go "old school," but still have all the latest innovations from Safariland to keep your firearm safe at your side.

HAVA Holds 13th Annual Family Day

Live entertainment, gifts, food, prizes and shooting exhibitions were just some of the highlights.

Can Perception Determine Reality?

How you appear to others can affect your safety.

BallistiClean 00 Buck Review

There’s less training conducted with the defensive shotgun than with any other defensive firearm. This is partly because shotguns recoil the hardest, and recoil is not something shooters typically enjoy. It’s also partly because shotguns—at least compared with handguns and carbines—are a bit expensive to shoot, especially if you’re training with 00 buckshot.

First Look: Anderson A4 Series with Picatinny Rails

Classically styled rifles, carbines and large-format pistols from one of America's most-popular AR builders.

Fightin' Iron: Those German Semi-Automatic Pistols

There are gun collectors who admire the craftsmanship and ingenuity of arms from other countries.

Interests



Get the best of Shooting Illustrated delivered to your inbox.