California’s Ammo Grab

New law makes buying ammo a lot harder


SACRAMENTO — A new law on ammunition purchases in California will take the State one step closer toward its goal of eliminating private firearm ownership. Proposition 63, effective January 2018, requires California citizens to purchase ammo from licensed in-state vendors.

This means when ammo is ordered online, it must be shipped to a vendor and then picked up by the customer, with an added fee going to the vendor, of course. The law also prohibits driving ammunition across state lines, and requires vendors to track ammo sales, with records submitted to the DOJ to be stored in the “Ammunition Purchase Records File.” On top of any fees imposed by the DOJ, vendors would have to purchase a $198 annual permit, the cost of which could be transferred to customers via a $5 fee on each individual sale of in-stock cartridges, as well as additional fees on larger orders or specialty cartridges.

A further stipulation will go into effect January of 2019, requiring citizens to undergo an FBI background check before purchasing ammo, which will also incur a processing fee for said background check. To purchase ammunition, Californians would have to buy a four-year, $50 permit available only to those who first pass a background check.

California Prop 63 infograph

When directly seizing firearms or banning them isn’t feasible, leave it to California legislators to enact a loophole measure to circumvent the Constitution. The increased costs of these regulations will translate into higher-priced ammunition, in addition to the added costs and delays faced by the customer. Prop 63 makes California the first State to treat ammunition sales as gun sales. The only winner here is the California Treasury, which will rake in millions of dollars in fees and fines.


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