DEERFIELD, IL – State Senate Candidate Julie Morrison (D-Deerfield) outlined her policy to reform the state’s Firearm Owner’s Identification system (FOID). Morrison is using the Auditor General’s recent audit of the FOID system as the basis for her reforms.
“The safeguards we currently have in place are not preventing dangerous people from accessing guns,” Morrison said. “I respect the rights of hunters and sportsmen but there comes a point where we need to institute common sense reforms that will keep our communities safe. Our state’s FOID system is supposed to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals but the Auditor General’s analysis of the program has made it clear that the FOID system is not working and needs substantial reforms.”
In April 2012, Auditor General William Holland released his office’s analysis of the FOID system. The audit revealed some alarming statistics. The audit revealed that only 3% of the circuit courts properly report mental health disorders to the Illinois State Police (ISP), that only 30% of revoked FOID cards are properly returned, and that the state police are overwhelmed with the number of FOID card requests. Current state law requires the state police to process FOID requests in less than 30 days. The crushing number of requests has resulted in the state police spending almost $500,000 per year in overtime processing requests in the allotted time. The audit concluded that ISP cannot do a proper job vetting FOID requests and meeting the 30 day requirement with current staffing ratios.
Morrison proposed reforms to the FOID system include:
- Changing state law to require courts to report mental health disorders within 30 days of adjudication.
- Changing state law to require a FOID Card be returned to ISP within 14 days of receiving notice that the card has been revoked
- Extend the FOID Card wait period to 45 days.
“Instituting these changes to the FOID Card system promotes more responsible gun ownership and keeps guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals,” Morrison said. “This is a broken process that is costing tax payers each year. We need to make these changes so that the system no longer wastes tax payer money. We need to implement reforms that will prevent dangerous people from accessing dangerous weapons.”