GOAL Requests Inspector General to Investigate Unlawful Licensing Practices

For quite some time GOAL has received a growing number of complaints from our members informing us of additional requirements being placed upon them by local firearm licensing officials. Some of these requirements include mandatory letters of reference, mandatory letters from physicians, membership to private clubs and other unlawful mandates.

Beginning in late March, GOAL began compiling evidence and has since sent a series of letters to the Massachusetts Inspector General (IG), Gregory Sullivan. In the letters, GOAL has asked the IG to investigate violations of the Massachusetts licensing laws.

“It is of the opinion of Gun Owners’ Action League that these requirements are in violation of Chapter 66, Section 10 and Chapter 140, Section 131(g). While violations of the latter are criminal offenses as outlined in Chapter 140, Section 131(k), GOAL is not seeking any criminal indictment at this time. It is merely our wish that the out of control licensing process in Massachusetts be reigned in and an adherence to the law be administered.”

As stated in our letters, Massachusetts General Law is very specific about the licensing process and does not grant any authority to any person or agency to deviate from that process. GOAL is requesting that our members aid in providing the Inspector General with any evidence of unlawful practices. If your local licensing authority is requiring anything outside of the standard application provided by the state, please send documentation of such requirements to the GOAL office so that we may then forward it to the IG’ s office for their consideration.

Chapter 66, Section 10: The executive director of the Criminal Justice Information Services, the Criminal Justice Information Services and its agents, servants, and attorneys including the keeper of the records of the firearms records bureau of said department, or any licensing authority, as defined by chapter one hundred and forty shall not disclose any records divulging or tending to divulge the names and addresses of persons who own or possess firearms, rifles, shotguns, machine guns and ammunition therefor, as defined in said chapter one hundred and forty and names and addresses of persons licensed to carry and/or possess the same to any person, firm, corporation, entity or agency except criminal justice agencies as defined in chapter six and except to the extent such information relates solely to the person making the request and is necessary to the official interests of the entity making the request.

Chapter 140, Section 131(g): ...The application for such license shall be made in a standard form provided by the executive director of the Criminal Justice Information Services, which form shall require the applicant to affirmatively state under the pains and penalties of perjury that such applicant is not disqualified on any of the grounds enumerated above from being issued such license.

 Chapter 140, Section 131(k): Whoever knowingly issues a license in violation of this section shall be punished by a fine of not less than $500 nor more than $1,000 or by imprisonment for not less than six months nor more than two years in a jail or house of correction, or by both such fine and imprisonment.


James L. Wallace
Executive Director
Gun Owners' Action League

Massachusetts Inspector General Greg Sullivan's Response

Jim Wallace responds to Inspector General Greg Sullvan


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