GOAL Requests Investigation into License System


Gun Owners' Action League has made a formal request to the House Post Audit and Oversight Committee to investigate the development and implementation of the Massachusetts Instant Records Check System.


Recently, GOAL received a letter from Governor Patrick regarding the use of license fees. In the letter he stated, “The Gun Control Act of 1998 required that the state develop an electronic system for the processing of firearms sales transactions. The revenues generated by licensing fees were necessary to fund the $5.9 million costs associated with the implementation of MIRCS.”

This simply is not the case. The only language in Chapter 180 of the Acts of 1998 concerning electronic communications is in Section 15. This section amends the law in regards to how licensed firearm dealers report sales to the state. The language in the law simply states, “…submit a record of all sales, rentals and leases forthwith at the time of such sale, rental or lease via electronic communication link.” This requirement could easily be met with a fax machine or email system.

Nothing in the 1998 law gave any agency the authority to spend nearly $6,000,000 to develop and implement an entirely new licensing and registration system.

As our members are aware, MIRCS has become much more than a sales reporting system. This system is being installed in local police departments as an online licensing system. GOAL can find no mandate or authorization in Chapter 180 for this.

"It is absolutely absurd that someone in our state government took it upon themselves to spend millions of dollars to develop a system that was never authorized," said Jim Wallace Executive Director of Gun Owners' Action League. "This new system has created an entire new bureaucracy, has placed new requirements on lawful gun owners, and has not improved service or brought any standardization to the process. How is this waste of our license fees a benefit to the licensed gun owners?"

Click here to read the GOAL letter to the House Post Audit and Oversight Committee.

Chapter 180 of the Acts of 1998, Section 15. Said section 123 of said chapter 140, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by striking out, in lines 24 to 26, inclusive, the words ", once a week, send a copy of the record of sales, rentals and leases made by him for the preceding seven days" and inserting in place thereof the following words:- submit a record of all sales, rentals and leases forthwith at the time of such sale, rental or lease via electronic communication link. 

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