The Illinois State Police (ISP) announced recently the availability of its web page for Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs) to certify their licenses with the ISP, in compliance with a new state statute signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Jan. 18.

The Firearm Dealer License Certification Act requires, "Each licensee (to) file with the Department a copy of its license, together with a sworn affidavit indicating the license presented is in fact its license and the license is valid."

Beginning July 17, 2019, it will be unlawful for a person or entity to engage in the business of selling, leasing, or otherwise transferring firearms without a valid certificate of license issued under the act.

Provisions are made for retail and non-retail locations, as well as businesses that have single or multiple locations. The statute gives the ISP 30 days to process applications for certification.

Intended to reduce the opportunity for illegal firearm transfers, the act requires certified licensees to keep on file with the ISP a firearms safe storage plan, to be connected to an alarm system on or before Jan. 2, 2020, and to maintain a video monitoring system on or before Jan. 2, 2021.

An additional provision requires the display of signage reminding firearm owners about their key legal responsibilities related to storage, sale or transfer, and reporting the loss or theft of firearms.

"Signing the Gun Dealer Licensing Act was an important step forward in ending the plague of gun violence in our communities, and I'm proud the Illinois State Police is implementing this vital law ahead of schedule," said Pritzker. "This new certification will deter straw purchases and make sure guns don't fall into the wrong hands. Nothing is more important than protecting Illinois families and law enforcement who keep us safe."

"The Illinois State Police is committed to keeping the citizens of Illinois safe," stated Acting ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly. "Every day we work with the Governor, members of the General Assembly, advocates and businesses making improvements to the system to prevent firearms from winding up in the hands of those who may be a threat to themselves and others," continued Kelly.

By requiring all owners, employees and agents of licensees to participate in a registration process, and those same individuals to have a valid Firearm Owner's Identification Card, the act was designed to significantly reduce the opportunity for both inadvertent and intentional illegal firearm transfers.

Those with questions can visit the FFL certification web page at www.isp.state.il.us where there are frequently asked questions. There is a required two-hour annual training for all program participants, tips are available for completing the on-line certification process and required documents can be uploaded into an FFL's file.

Certifications are valid for the term of the license FFL being certified and will cost non-retail applicants $300 and retail applicants $1500.

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