Senate passes S.209 'ghost guns' bill

Vermont Business Magazine Today the Vermont Senate gave preliminary approval to S.209, a bill to support public safety through the prohibition of unserialized firearms, on a tripartian vote of 26-3-1. The bill would address the increase in sales of “ghost guns,” which are unserialized, untraceable homemade firearms often made from kits or through 3D printing. 

“This bill is an important public safety initiative,” said Senator Sears, chair of the Senate Committee on Judiciary and lead sponsor of the bill. “It’s imperative that we address the public safety risk of unserialized firearms and protect Vermonters from increasing threats of violence in our communities.”  

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the number of ghost guns recovered by law enforcement agencies “increased by more than 1,300 percent from 2016 to 2022.

Loopholes in current state and federal laws permit the sale of unserialized firearm kits without a background check, allowing those who are legally prohibited from purchasing firearms to buy kits and assemble a fully functioning gun. 

Because “ghost guns” do not have serial numbers, they are also untraceable and inhibit law enforcement’s ability to solve gun-related crimes.  

"Keeping Vermonters safe from gun violence is a top priority," said Senator Baruth, President Pro Tempore of the Vermont Senate and co-lead sponsor of the bill. "Over the last decade, the General Assembly has methodically built out and strengthened our background check system, eliminating loopholes like private sales without background checks, or the gun show loophole. S.209 continues that crucial work. No Vermonter should be able to 3D print a gun in their basement – or order a ready-to-assemble gun kit off the internet – without acquiring a serial number and a background check for that weapon. Vermonters of all political parties can agree on that."

You can learn more about S.209 on the legislative website.

Source: 2.28.2024. MONTPELIER, VT –  Office of the President Pro Tempore Vermont Business Magazine