Firearms Safety Training Part of Chicago's New Ordinance

Introduced by Mayor Richard M. Daley on July 1 after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling shot down the prior ordinance, this one was passed 45-0 the next day by the city council but denounced by the National Rifle Association.

Voting 45-0, the Chicago City Council passed a new gun ordinance July 2 that replaces an ordinance shot down by the U.S. Supreme Court. Mayor Richard M. Daley introduced his “Responsible Gun Ownership” ordinance July 1; it was promptly denounced by the National Rifle Association. "There are numerous problems," said Alexa Fritts, an NRA spokeswoman. "It is extremely restrictive and completely against the intent of the Supreme Court ruling. It is ludicrous for someone to fear prosecution for fending off an attacker in their garage.”

Firearms safety training is required by the ordinance. It permits only one handgun per month in the home per adult or applicant to be registered and generally bars possession of a handgun by any person except in that person's home. Its registration process starts with obtaining a city firearms permit, which requires having a valid State of Illinois Firearm Owners' Identification Card, and then registering the gun with the Chicago Police Department.

The ordinance bans assault weapons and mandates jail time beginning in 2011 for anyone caught with one. The firearms safety training it requires would take place in a classroom and also on a firing range.

"It's clear to all that our current handgun ordinance will soon be struck down by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals," Daley said at a news conference before its passage. "With that in mind, today I want to announce our proposal to rewrite Chicago's gun laws. It responsibly and reasonably balances previous court rulings on 2nd Amendment rights with our determination to protect our residents from violence and keep them safe."

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