Sunday, February 9, 2014

Public Act 98-0063

Please understand, I am not a lawyer. While I am willing to comment on the law, I would recommend very highly that you not rely on my comments to keep you out of jail. The law as written is very poorly constructed and with a lot of potential nightmares hidden in it.

P.A. 98-0063 created The Firearms Concealed Carry Act (FCCA). This is a very brief review of the act by section(s).

Sections 1 through 110 are the FCCA, or at least the first version of it. Note that not all of the section numbers are used.

Section 1 gave it a name. This may seem somewhat unnecessary, but it allows for other acts to refer to it by name. That is occasionally handy.

Section 5 is definitions.

One interesting definition is this one.
"Concealed firearm" means a loaded or unloaded handgun carried on or about a person completely or mostly concealed from view of the public or on or about a person within a vehicle.
The bold emphasis is mine.

Section 10 states the license is shall issue to those who qualify.

This subsection defines what the license is good for.
(c) A license shall be valid throughout the State for a period of 5 years from the date of issuance. A license shall permit the licensee to:
(1) carry a loaded or unloaded concealed firearm, fully concealed or partially concealed, on or about his or her person; and
(2) keep or carry a loaded or unloaded concealed firearm on or about his or her person within a vehicle. 
The bold emphasis is mine. Lots of other interesting stuff in this section.

Section 15 covers objections by LE to license applicants.

Section 20 covers the Concealed Carry Licensing Review Board.

Section 25 covers Qualifications for a license.

Section 30 covers contents of license application.

Section 35 covers investigation of the applicant. It requires the ISP to investigate each applicant and what investigative resources are to be used.

Section 40 covers non-resident license applications. The people who wrote the law made sure that non-residents mostly don't qualify. At present, only HI residents qualify.

Subsection (e) of section 40 has this gem.
(e) Nothing in this Act shall prohibit a non-resident from transporting a concealed firearm within his or her vehicle in Illinois, if the concealed firearm remains within his or her vehicle and the non-resident:
(1) is not prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm under federal law;
(2) is eligible to carry a firearm in public under the laws of his or her state or territory of residence; and
(3) is not in possession of a license under this Act. If the non-resident leaves his or her vehicle unattended,
he or she shall store the firearm within a locked vehicle or locked container within the vehicle in accordance with subsection (b) of Section 65 of this Act.
This was amended somewhat in the P.A. 98-0600, and has apparently been interpreted by the ISP as allowing qualified non-residents to carry a concealed handgun within their vehicles, even though it does not actually say that.

Section 45 grants civil immunity to government employees who deal with the FCCA.

Section 50 covers license renewal.

Section 55 covers change of address and lost or stolen licenses.

Section 60 covers fees.

$150 for a standard applicant - new or renewal.
$300 for a non-resident - new or renewal.
$75 for a replacement license (see section 55).

Section 65 covers prohibited areas. It is not clear to me whether section 65 modifies where in the state the license is good or just creates violations of the FCCA. Note that it starts out with "(a) A licensee under this Act shall not knowingly carry a firearm on or into:", and then lists 23 places a licensee cannot carry. It also uses the word "firearm" and not the term "concealed firearm" that was defined just for the act.

This is a good section for FCCL to read carefully. Multiple times.

Section 70 covers penalties for violators.

Section 75 covers applicant firearm training.

Section 80 covers firearms instructor training.

Section 85 specifies that the FCCL does not exempt a licensee from background checks required to purchase firearms. Why this is necessary is unclear to me. Maybe just a feel good thing for the antis.

Section 87. covers administrative and judicial review.

Section 90 covers preemption. It is unclear just what it means. One part of it says it only applies to licensees while another sentence leaves out that proviso.

Section 92 creates some kind of study commission to investigate the really bad idea of consolidating the FOID Card and FCCL into a licensee's driver's license.

Section 95 gives the ISP the right to create rules and deals with some procurement issues.

Sections 100 through 110 created the School Administrator Reporting of Mental Health Clear and Present Danger Determinations Law. It is part of the FCCA. It appears to require school administrators to make determinations of students who present a clear and present danger and rat them out to the state. It is not clear to me just how school administrators would be qualified to make this determination.

Sections 115 amended the Open Meetings Act to close the operations of the Concealed Carry Licensing Review Board to public scrutiny.

Section 120 amended the Freedom of Information Act to prohibit FCCL personal information from being released, but it also hides much of the workings of the Concealed Carry Licensing Review Board and ISP activities relating to administration of the FCCA from public scrutiny.

Section 122 amended the Secretary of State Act to allow the ISP access to driver's licenses photos. Not an unreasonable thing IMO.

Section 125.
Amended The Department of State Police Law of the Civil Administrative Code of Illinois to allow LE records be used for FCCA purposes.

Created the State Police Firearm Services Fund to hold funds relating to the FOID and FCCA Acts,

Amended the State Finance Act to include The Mental Health Reporting Fund and The State Police Firearm Services Fund into the act,  and creating The Mental Health Reporting Fund

Section 135. The State Finance Act is amended by repealing Section 5.206. No idea what was in there to begin with. Possibly something to do with the FOID Card Act funds.

Section 140 amended the Illinois Explosives Act to ban people from getting an explosives license if the person has been adjudicated a mentally disabled person as defined in Section 1.1 of the Firearm Owners Identification Card Act. Previously it used the term "mental defective".

Section 142 amended the Liquor Control Act to punish a bar owner "who knowingly fails to prohibit concealed firearms on its premises". Nothing in this section tells a bar owner just how they would go about prohibiting concealed firearms on its premises. Interestingly, it does not provide for an option for bar owners to allow anyone to carry concealed in their bar including themselves or security personnel. It does reference the FCCA, but does not actually limit the required prohibition to FCCL holders.

It also uses the term "concealed firearms" without referencing the definition found in the FCCA. It might well be that bar owners are also prohibited from having concealed firearms of any type, not just handguns. The term "concealed firearms" is only defined for the FCCA and thus does not apply to the Liquor Control Act.

Section 145 amends The Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code changing the term "mental defective" to "mentally disabled person". PC, I guess.

It also adds some sections to this law the effect of which seem relatively innocent but just what they might actually mean in practice is unclear. What I suspect is some cleanup work went on with some phrasing that is inconsistent between different sections of various laws.

Section 150 makes a whole series of changes to the FOID Card Act. I have not looked at them in depth.

The most notable change that jumped out at me when I first looked at this act is that people who voluntarily admit themselves to a mental health facility are now subject to being banned from owning firearms for 5 years. Oddly, the banning does not apply to alcohol treatment. It also has some language that effectively makes the 5 year banning for involuntary admission to a mental health facility not applicable to LEOs.

430 ILCS 65/13.1 added some additional preemption language, further limiting what localities can do WRT regulating firearms. Like much of this act, it is badly written and may not mean exactly what it appears to say.

Section 155 amends the criminal code WRT UUW.

Sec. 24-1.6. Aggravated unlawful use of a weapon was amended to have two separate categories of offense. One for handguns, and one for non-handguns. The one for handguns exempts FCCL. My take is that you can't be charged with AUUW for carrying a handgun if you have a FCCL. It does not specify open or concealed carry.

Sec. 24-2. Exemptions was amended to add an exception to 24-1(a)(4) and 24-1(a)(10) for FCCL holders who are carrying a concealed handgun.

It therefore appears to me that open carry of handguns is no longer felony UUW for FCCL holders. Very strange.

A provision of the act requiring machine guns and short barrel rifles be broken down during transportation was repealed.

Section 160 amended The Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963 to change the firearms prohibitions against persons who are the subject of an order of protection. It is not clear to me if this is an improvement in the law or just a change. It now allows for a person who has been so ordered to turn over their firearms to someone with a FOID card rather than a local law enforcement agency as was previously the case. That part is certainly an improvement.

Section 165 amended The Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Confidentiality Act. It allows any examiner to submit a secret report on anyone to allow their firearms rights to be revoked. Does not sound real good on its face. It also changes some definitions to coincide with those found in the FOID Card Act.

Section 170 amended The Probate Act of 1975 to require courts to report to the ISP when someone is adjudicated as disabled.

Section 195 appears to be some kind of administrative thing regarding when modified sections of existing law take effect.

Sec. 999. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon becoming law.

My FCCA blog

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