IF YOU BELIEVE THAT THE BUREAU OF ALCOHOL, TOBACCO, FIREARMS, AND EXPLOSIVES (ATF) NATIONAL FIREARMS ACT BRANCH (NFA) DOES NOT HAVE THE PROPER TECHNOLOGY NOR THE MAN POWER TO EFFECTIVELY SERVE THE TAX PAYERS THAT IT IS BOUND BY LAW TO SERVE, PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION.
The National Firearms Act (NFA) Branch of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) is in charge of maintaining the national registry of all Title II firearms (machineguns, short barrel shotguns, short barrel rifles, and silencers). There is a $200 tax paid for every civilian transfer. There will be over 50,000 applications for transfer of Title II firearms in fiscal year 2011. There will be over $10,000,000 of revenue generated for civilian transfers in FY 2011. Manufacturers and dealers pay a license fee of $500 (min) or $1000 (max) to make and deal in Title II firearms which generates several hundred thousand dollars in revenue annually.
For each individual who makes application for transfer, two FBI fingerprint cards are generated, two passport photos are submitted, and the local Chief Law Enforcement Officer (CLEO) must give their signature of approval. For each entity that makes submission, they must provide proper documentation (e.g. copy of living trust, articles of incorporation, etc.) and these items must be examined by the NFA Branch and/or the FBI. There are currently 10 examiners employed at the NFA branch. They will be losing another examiner to retirement in November 2011.
The employees at the NFA are overworked. They cannot produce the results that are required. Tax payers are waiting in excess of 6 months to have their paperwork processed, and with the increased demand, the wait will be in excess of one year in FY 2012. This is unacceptable.
Despite the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the NFA continues to use a paper-based system and depends on mail for all of the Title II transfers that take place.
Approved licensed manufacturers must submit application (ATF FORM 2) via fax or mail to the NFA to manufacture Title II firearms.
Approved licensed dealers must submit application (ATF FORM 3) via fax or mail to the NFA to transfer a Title II firearm to another dealer. This process can take 2 weeks to 3 months.
Applications from dealer to customer (ATF Form 4) are submitted along with $200 to Atlanta, GA where the $200 is removed and placed into a bank account. The forms go into a pile of forms and then are shipped to Martinsburg, WV where they are processed. It can take anywhere from 2 weeks to 6 weeks for the forms to make it from being received in Atlanta, GA to Martinsburg WV.
With the mounds of paperwork, forms are lost which cause further delay.
The NFA needs to incorporate an electronic system that can be accessed via the Internet by licensed dealers and manufacturers. Manufacturers would be able to input all of the items that they have manufactured, check them for accuracy, and submit them to the NFA registry.
The database should be able to track and instantly approve licensed dealer to licensed dealer transfers. The transferor would be able to submit application, print an approval, and instantly be able to transfer the item.
Form 4 transfers should be mailed directly to Martinsburg, WV to save the government time and money for the shipment from Atlanta to Martinsburg.
More examiners need to be hired. Any private business generating $10 million per year that could most certainly increase revenues (profits) if they increased the number of employees, that business would most certainly hire. In the time where the unemployment hovers over 9% nationally, it would make sense to hire more employees in order to generate more tax revenue.
To even further the processing of Title II firearms, an instant approval system (i.e. National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS)) could be created. Licensed dealers would call and conduct a background check to gain approval for transfer. The dealer would input the customers’ information in the database as well as the Title II firearm information after approval for transfer was granted. The dealer would then submit a monthly report and taxes that were collected to the NFA.
It is an assumption, but if the number of examiners were kept at a minimum of 30 examiners, the number of applications would triple over a three-year period. That is a jump from $10 million in transfer revenues to $30 million. This would generate more revenue for the government. This would increase production in the private sector and increase jobs. By increasing the sales, income and sales tax would also increase. The reduction in paper forms would decrease money spent for supplies.
Six months is entirely too long to wait for a service that is being paid for. There is a right and proper way to do things, and the NFA is not doing business this way. The fix is easy and will most certainly raise revenues for the US Federal Government. This decision is a no-brainer, but how do we fight the bureaucracy to make this happen? We are petitioning you to take action and press the solutions that are presented in order to solve these problems and create jobs in a down economy.