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Lawmakers fighting for suppressors to be regulated like guns

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI) - Gun owners in Idaho are one step closer to having easier access to protect their ear drums.

On Tuesday, the Idaho Senate passed Senate Joint Memorial 104, which is pushing for suppressors to be regulated the same way guns are in the Gem State.

Currently, purchasing a suppressor for your firearm is not a speedy process. It can take months and it comes with a $200 tax stamp, on top of having to wait up to 270 days to get the paperwork. Which is substantially longer than the seconds it takes for a firearm background check. 

Senator Mark Harris of Soda Springs was one of many lawmakers speaking in favor of the resolution. Saying it will make it easier for gun owners to get their hands on a suppressor and protect their hearing.

“These are legal in 42 states," Harris said, "and millions of these are already in the hands of citizens legally."

“These aren’t the things that you see in the movies in Hollywood," Sen. Todd M. Lakey, District 23 said. "This simply reduces the noise so it does not cause potential damage to your hearing.

"But it’s not a silencer, it’s a suppressor.” 

On average, suppressors diminish the noise of a gunshot by 20-35 decibels, roughly the same sound reduction provided by earplugs.

However, some lawmakers had some reservations about the resolution. 

Saying easier access to suppressors would make it easier for criminals to get their hands on one.

“They have been used to murder police officers." Sen. Melissa Wintrow of Boise said. "And I think in this case, we’re putting profit above safety.” 

Senate Joint Memorial 104 passed on a 30-5 vote.

The resolution now heads to the Idaho House.

Article Topic Follows: Idaho Politics

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Conner Nuckols


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