ACSL Archives 2007 and earlier

PLEASE NOTE: We have tried to maintain links where possible,

 but due to the archival nature of these articles,

some links may have changed or be otherwise unavailable.

This much needed bill clarifies and defines Pa election code requirements for public disclosure of all candidates’ information, voter eligibility requirements, and much needed oversight to the election process of candidates to public offices.   

HB 1145 - Prohibits the Governor in time of a disaster or emergency from seizure, taking or confiscation of lawfully possessed firearms or ammunition












This bill prohibits the governor of PA from authorizing anyone from unlawfully taking of firearms or ammo away its citizens in times of any disaster or emergency situation.

As evidence, the accounts of what happened to the survivors of  hurricane Katrina wherein the Governor of Louisiana disarmed the citizens who needed their firearms the most to protect themselves from the break down of all civil authority and protect their property from criminal looting and violent attacks.  (There are currently no specific protections against this kind seizure of firearms in Pennsylvania law.)


HB 1160 – Temporary emergency Licenses for carrying further provided







This bill authorizes the issuance of immediate temporary non-renewable concealed carry license to qualified individuals in imminent danger for their lives.  This license would be issued, by the Sheriff in the County of residence, only after the individual provides evidence of the imminent danger AND passes all the background checks necessary for the issuance of a regular license to carry firearms. 


HB 1161 - Offense of unlawful firearms records; penalty prescribed.










This bill prohibits the state police or any other state agency from keeping or maintaining any registry or any type of database of law abiding firearm owner’s purchases.  Free people should never have their gun registered and history has shown that registration has always lead to confiscation of firearms, and given rise to tyranny. People should not fear their governments, governments should be fear of their people.  A long as this balance of power by of consent to be governed by the people, honesty, fairness and freedom for all is maintained.

The state police wasted nearly $130 million operating the PICS system, which would have been done at ‘no’ cost to gun owners or the state of Pennsylvania by the National Instant Check system,  a part of which is the retention and maintenance of an illegal database of gun owners.  How many crimes have the state police solved by the staggering amount of money spent?  Conducting the Instant Checks through the state run system has cost Pennsylvania citizens and gun owners dearly.

1998 Start up costs for the PICS System --                      $22,000,000.

Yearly costs to operate and maintain PICS --            $6,000,000.

(Total thus far 11 years x $6 million=            $66,000,000)

2007 PICS Upgrade --                                         $32,000,000

Total Costs to date --                                                          $126,000,000

Successfully prosecuted prohibited individuals who tried to buy a gun on average per year--120 - 140

Wouldn’t the money be much better spent catching and locking criminals up rather than making list of law abiding gun owner’s firearms?  See also SB 738 for concurrent senate bill.


HB 1185 – Employees Right to self defense act.









This bill prohibits employers from discharging, threatening, or discriminating against an individual who chooses to exercise their right to self-defense throughout the Commonwealth, while on the job or storing their firearm in their privately owned vehicles on company property. 


HB 1235 – provides for open access to PSP Records that are used in the denial of a firearms purchase so that a citizen can challenge the accuracy of criminal history records information. Note this bill is currently in senate, passed house vote 197 to 6 against.










This bill provides a specific and regulated process for the state police to provide show just cause and provide documentation in a specifically designated time frame as to why an individual was denied the right to acquire firearms.

There is also a prescribed manor in where the individual citizen can challenge the accuracy of the state record. The burden to prove the accuracy shall fall upon that agency to prove its records are correct. If the challenge to accuracy is ruled valid, the individual also has the right to appeal the decision directly to PA the Attorney General for another review.   If that review fails you shall have the added recourse of appealing to the commonwealth court.  This is vastly superior to the current system of hiring a lawyer and paying legal fees to obtain the same information.


HB 1292 – Limits the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, to regulate the possession of firearms inconsistent with provisions of statutory law.











This bill restricts the DCNR from regulating the possession of firearms by concealed carry permit holders or off duty law enforcement officers in PA state parks or any other area of their jurisdiction against state law.


HB 1392 – defining “Firearm” in theft and related offenses.








This bill closes a loop hole in current law and specifically defines what a firearm is in relationship to theft and other related offenses to be consistent with other definitions of the term firearm used in other laws


HB 1569 - Criminal history record expungement.








This bill provides for specific procedures for limited individuals that have paid their debt to society turned the lives around and have lead a productive life a means to have their rights restored as full citizens of PA.

HR 296 - Federal REAL ID ACT unfunded mandate costing PA taxpayers $ Millions










Note this resolution is currently in senate, passed house vote 200 to 3 against

This resolution opposes the costly unfunded mandate for the state of PA driver’s license to comply with federal standard imposed under the REAL ID ACT of 2005. It’s estimated that compliance with this act by PA taxpayers is going to be approximately 86 million dollars and raises privacy and security concerns that will affect all citizens. Additional other state legislators from Maine, Idaho, Arkansas, Montana, Washington, Georgia, Texas, West Virginia, New York, Maryland, Ohio and others are rejecting this act as well PA will also reject this unfounded mandate.


SB 738 – Unlawful registry of privately owned firearms or maintaining an illegal database of firearm owners.  This bill is the senate version of HB 1161 – see it for review.


If you would like to have any of this PRO-GUN legislation become a law in PA.

 Please write your PA representatives letters and emails and ask them to support these proposed PRO-GUN legislation.  Be sure to mention the bill numbers and thank them for their support of your Constitutional right.

 You can also make copies of the Vote NO and Vote YES legislation list, have members of your gun club or friends sign them and send them to the legislators.

 We ask you to vote NO on the following bills as they are a direct violation of our Constitutional rights under Article 1 Section 21 & Section 25



HB     18 – Ammunition, limitations on regulation, municipal powers.

HB     20 Mandatory Gun Storage within easy access to minors prohibited; penalties

HB     21Display or use of firearm, further providing for bail, governed by general rules

HB     22Handgun purchases and sales, limit; Violence Prevention Fund, establishing; municipal regulation of firearms and ammunition

HB     23 – Handgun and ammunition, regulation; limitation on municipal powers.

HB     25 – Firearms and ammunition, regulation; limitation on municipal powers

HB     28Persons prohibited from possessing, using, manufacturing, controlling, selling or transferring; carrying firearms on public streets or property in Philadelphia

HB     29 – Registry for lost or stolen, failure to report, State Police duties

HB     30 – Assault Weapon Ban, prohibition, registration, penalties

HB     73 – Cruelty to animals, live pigeon shoots prohibited

HB   277Ballistics ID of Bullets & Mandatory Use of Trigger Locks

HB   291 – Handgun Safety, Testing & Certification; providing for implementation of personalized handgun requirements and forfeiture of certain handguns

HB   452 – Amends Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses) further providing for persons prohibited from possessing, using, manufacturing, controlling, selling or transferring firearms.

HB   485 – Firearms and ammunition Commission, limitation on regulation.

HB   760 – Firearm Registration Act

HB   960First class city, gives cities power to enact their own laws & regulations

HB 1198 – Illegal Firearm Task Force Program, established, Office of Attorney General, powers, duties; appropriation

HB 1478 – Sale or transfer, fee, surcharge, Added cost to firearm transactions

HB 1536 – Sale or transfer, further provided unless approved mandatory training program

HB 1633First class cities firearm registration act – reworked HB 760

HB 1701 – Capitol Gun Carry Prohibited, penalties and limitations

HB 1733 – Registry of lost or stolen, Pennsylvania State Police - HB 29 Reworked

HB 1745 – Amends the Tax Reform Code - an additional tax on ammunition

HB 1746 – first class cities to impose restrictions purchase, sale and possession of firearms.

HB 1758 – local government may enact laws its own Firearms.

HB 1845 – Possession of firearms with removed manufactures numbers


We ask you to vote YES for the following bills. We also ask you to pass reality based laws which protect Citizens’ rights, and which lock up and punish criminals that prey upon the people that elected you to make their lives and this Commonwealth a safer place.




HB     19 Offenders, serious drug trafficking, violent repeat, not to possess firearms.

HB   142 Right to hunt, fish, harvest game

HB   205 PGC Commission, composition & former employees

HB   618 – Rights, restoration, offenses under prior laws of the Commonwealth

HB   641 – Self-protection, general principals of justifications, definitions, protection of other persons, use of force, civil immunity for use of force, sentences for firearms offenses

HB   819 Game Commission, regulations relating to hunting with flintlock muzzleloader.

HB 1029 – Firearms, sale or transfer, further provided

HB 1115 – Pennsylvania Election Code - Discloser to public of candidates

HB 1145 - Prohibits the Governor in time of a disaster or emergency from seizure, taking or confiscation of lawfully possessed firearms or ammunition

HB 1160Temporary emergency Licenses for carrying further provided

HB 1161 – Offense of unlawful firearms records; penalty prescribed

HB 1185 – Employees Right to self defense act

HB 1235 – providing for challenge of accuracy of criminal history records information

HB 1248 – Publish publicly the enforcement of PA Laws and the court information on judges, prosecutors and positions taken on enforcing the law including sentencing.

HB 1292 – Limits the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, to regulate the possession of firearms inconsistent with provisions of statutory law.

HB 1392defining “Firearm” in theft and related offenses.

HB 1569criminal history record expungement

HR   296 – Federal REAL ID ACT unfunded mandate costing 86 million to PA taxpayers

SB    738 – Unlawful registry of privately owned firearms or maintaining an illegal database of firearm owners.



ORGANIZATION: Allegheny County Sportsmen's League, Inc.


***Allegheny County Sportsmen's League***   

    November 23, 2007




Issue:  Judiciary Committee Vote – November 20th –House Bills 18, 22, 29

 CONGRATULATIONS!!! November 20th will LONG be remembered as the day a sitting Governor, Ed Rendell, took on the gun owners of Pennsylvania by personally appearing before the Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee to testify in favor three unconstitutional anti-gun bills--HB 18, HB 22, HB 29—AND LOST!!   

Governor Rendell gave an emotional speech in support of HB 18, HB 22 and HB 29, once again ignoring the real causes and solutions to violent crime and falsely claiming that gun control is the answer - just as mainstream doctors once prescribed bleeding as the answer to almost every ailment.   

Sitting beside the governor during his testimony was his State Police commissioner.  Unlike real police officers, PSP commissioners serve at the pleasure of the governor just as chiefs of police serve at the pleasure of mayors and city councils.  Commissioner Miller and the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association have previously demonstrated a callous disregard for competitive target shooters and American soldiers by supporting a ban on the very AR-15 H-BAR target rifles and CAR-15 type carbines that are used in competition and in training our military troops prior to deployment to supplement the inadequate marksmanship and use training.  The troopers and officers who serve the public under such leadership deserve our deepest sympathies, respect and support.   

It is important to note that Governor Rendell and Chairman Caltagirone would not have scheduled HB 18, HB 22, and HB 29 for a vote if they didn't think that their dog and pony show would prevail.  They were wrong!!!  


 House Bill 18 was DEFEATED 19-10

   **Pro-Gun Votes-(HB 18)

          Representative, Deberah, Kula

   , District-52, Party-D, (717) 772-1858

          Representative, John E., Pallone

   , District-54, Party-D, (717) 783-1819, J-Sub Com C&C

          Representative, Joseph A., Petrarca

   , District-55, Party-D, (717) 787-5142

          Representative, Sean M., Ramaley

   , District-16, Party-D, (717) 787-4444

          Representative, Don, Walko

 , District-20, Party-D, (717) 787-5470, J-Sub Com Court

          Representative, Jesse, White

   , District-46, Party-D, (717) 783-6437

          Representative, Ronald S., Marisco

   , District-105, Party-R, (717) 783-2014, Minor Chair

          Representative, Thomas C., Creighton

   , District-37, Party-R, (717) 772-5290

          Representative, Craig A., Dally

   , District-138, Party-R, (717) 783-8573, MinorV.Chair

          Representative, John R., Evans

   , District-5, Party-R, (717) 772-9940

  Representative, Will, Gabig

   , District-199, Party-R, (717) 772-2280

          Representative, Glen R., Grell

   , District-87, Party-R, (717) 783-2063

          Representative, Kate, Harper

   , District-61, Party-R, (717) 787-2801

          Representative, Beverly, Mackereth

   , District-196, Party-R, (717) 783-2655

          Representative, Carl W., Mantz

   , District-187, Party-R, (717) 787-3017

  Representative, Bernard T., O'Neill

   , District-29, Party-R, (717) 705-7170

          Representative, Tina, Pickett

   , District-110, Party-R, (717) 783-8238

          Representative, Todd, Rock

   , District-90, Party-R, (717) 783-5218

          Representative, Katie, True

   , District-41, Party-R, (717) 705-7161

 **Anti-Gun Votes-(HB 18)

          Representative, Lisa, Bennington

   , District-21, Party-D, (717) 705-7011

          Representative, Thomas R., Caltagirone

   , District-127, Party-D, (717) 787-3525, J-Major Chair

          Representative, Dan B., Frankel

   , District-23, Party-D, (717) 705-1875

          Representative, Harold, James

   , District-186, Party-D, (717) 787-9477

          Representative, Daylin, Leach

   , District-149, Party-D, (717) 783-9114, J-Secretary

  Representative, Bryan R., Lentz

   , District-161, Party-D, (717) 787-8574

          Representative, Kathy M., Manderino

   , District-194, Party-D, (717) 787-1254, J-Sub Com F.L.

          Representative, Greg S., Vitali

   , District-166, Party-D, (717) 787-7647

          Representative, Chelsa, Wagner

   , District-22, Party-D, (717) 783-1582

          Representative, Jewell, Williams

   , District-197, Party-D, (717) 772-2004

House Bill 22 was DEFEATED 17-12

   **Pro-Gun Votes –(HB22)

          Representative, Deberah, Kula

   , District-52, Party-D, (717) 772-1858

          Representative, John E., Pallone

   , District-54, Party-D, (717) 783-1819, J-Sub Com C&C

          Representative, Joseph A., Petrarca

   , District-55, Party-D, (717) 787-5142

          Representative, Sean M., Ramaley

   , District-16, Party-D, (717) 787-4444

          Representative, Don, Walko

   , District-20, Party-D, (717) 787-5470, J-Sub Com Court

   Representative, Jesse, White

   , District-46, Party-D, (717) 783-6437

          Representative, Ronald S., Marisco

   , District-105, Party-R, (717) 783-2014, Minor Chair

          Representative, Thomas C., Creighton

   , District-37, Party-R, (717) 772-5290

          Representative, Craig A., Dally

   , District-138, Party-R, (717) 783-8573, MinorV.Chair

          Representative, John R., Evans

   , District-5, Party-R, (717) 772-9940

          Representative, Will, Gabig

   , District-199, Party-R, (717) 772-2280

Representative, Glen R., Grell

   , District-87, Party-R, (717) 783-2063

          Representative, Beverly, Mackereth

   , District-196, Party-R, (717) 783-2655

          Representative, Carl W., Mantz

   , District-187, Party-R, (717) 787-3017

          Representative, Tina, Pickett

   , District-110, Party-R, (717) 783-8238

          Representative, Todd, Rock

   , District-90, Party-R, (717) 783-5218

  Representative, Katie, True

   , District-41, Party-R, (717) 705-7161


   **Anti-Gun Votes-(HB 22)

          Representative, Kate, Harper

   , District-61, Party-R, (717) 787-2801

          Representative, Bernard T., O'Neill

   , District-29, Party-R, (717) 705-7170

          Representative, Lisa, Bennington

   , District-21, Party-D, (717) 705-7011

   Representative, Thomas R., Caltagirone

   , District-127, Party-D, (717) 787-3525, J-Major Chair

          Representative, Dan B., Frankel

   , District-23, Party-D, (717) 705-1875

          Representative, Harold, James

   , District-186, Party-D, (717) 787-9477

          Representative, Daylin, Leach

   , District-149, Party-D, (717) 783-9114, J-Secretary

          Representative, Bryan R., Lentz

   , District-161, Party-D, (717) 787-8574

          Representative, Kathy M., Manderino

   , District-194, Party-D, (717) 787-1254, J-Sub Com F.L.


  Representative, Greg S., Vitali

   , District-166, Party-D, (717) 787-7647

          Representative, Chelsa, Wagner

   , District-22, Party-D, (717) 783-1582

          Representative, Jewell, Williams

   , District-197, Party-D, (717) 772-2004

House Bill 29 was TABLED 12-17

   **Vote to Table-(HB 29)

          Representative, Thomas R., Caltagirone

   , District-127, Party-D, (717) 787-3525, J-Major Chair

          Representative, Lisa, Bennington

   , District-21, Party-D, (717) 705-7011

          Representative, Dan B., Frankel

   , District-23, Party-D, (717) 705-1875

          Representative, Harold, James

   , District-186, Party-D, (717) 787-9477

          Representative, Daylin, Leach


   , District-149, Party-D, (717) 783-9114, J-Secretary

   Representative, Bryan R., Lentz

   , District-161, Party-D, (717) 787-8574

          Representative, Kathy M., Manderino

   , District-194, Party-D, (717) 787-1254, Sub Com F.L.

          Representative, John E., Pallone

   , District-54, Party-D, (717) 783-1819, J-Sub Com C&C

          Representative, Sean M., Ramaley

   , District-16, Party-D, (717) 787-4444

          Representative, Greg S., Vitali

   , District-166, Party-D, (717) 787-7647

          Representative, Chelsa, Wagner

   , District-22, Party-D, (717) 783-1582

  Representative, Don, Walko

   , District-20, Party-D, (717) 787-5470, J-Sub Com Court

          Representative, Jesse, White

   , District-46, Party-D, (717) 783-6437

          Representative, Jewell, Williams

   , District-197, Party-D, (717) 772-2004

          Representative, Will, Gabig

   , District-199, Party-R, (717) 772-2280

          Representative, Kate, Harper

   , District-61, Party-R, (717) 787-2801

     Representative, Bernard T., O'Neill

   , District-29, Party-R, (717) 705-7170


   **Vote AGAINST Tabling-(HB 29)

          Representative, Deberah, Kula

   , District-52, Party-D, (717) 772-1858

          Representative, Joseph A., Petrarca

   , District-55, Party-D, (717) 787-5142

          Representative, Ronald S., Marisco

   , District-105, Party-R, (717) 783-2014, Minor Chair

   Representative, Thomas C., Creighton

   , District-37, Party-R, (717) 772-5290

          Representative, Craig A., Dally

   , District-138, Party-R, (717) 783-8573, MinorV.Chair

          Representative, John R., Evans

   , District-5, Party-R, (717) 772-9940

          Representative, Glen R., Grell

   , District-87, Party-R, (717) 783-2063

          Representative, Beverly, Mackereth

   , District-196, Party-R, (717) 783-2655

Representative, Carl W., Mantz

   , District-187, Party-R, (717) 787-3017

          Representative, Tina, Pickett

   , District-110, Party-R, (717) 783-8238

          Representative, Todd, Rock

   , District-90, Party-R, (717) 783-5218

          Representative, Katie, True

   , District-41, Party-R, (717) 705-7161 



***Allegheny County Sportsmen's League***       November 11, 2007 




IssueUpdate HB 1744—House Floor Action Imminent on HB 1744 (Review of legislation is attached along with the latest version of the bill) 

House Bill 1744 has been amended in the Judiciary Committee and is scheduled for House Floor action (the current version is attached).  In some ways the amendments have made this legislation even worse.  Attached to this message is a review of the issues currently contained in the legislation.  This legislation is scheduled for 2nd consideration this coming Wednesday the 14th. The ACSL and the PSA have examined this legislation and we are in agreement with the attached review.  We are VERY concerned about the section on ‘firearms education in the schools’ and the likelihood of it opening up a new dimension of propagandizing these issues with kids.  It is ‘highly’ unusual to put a school funding issue into the Crimes Codes (Title 18) to say the least.  You will notice that the dedicated anti-gun legislators like Rep. Dan Frankel and the Philadelphia legislative contingent ALL voted FOR (Votes Attached) this legislation AND the amendments.  It is our belief that they KNOW what opportunities exist for their agenda in this legislation.  We would also remind you that we have been ‘very’ lucky with our current Attorney General (Tom Corbett) and that it is ‘highly possible’ that the next Attorney General could end up behaving like Ernie (ban Assault Weapons) Preate or have an anti-gun/anti-hunting philosophy.  This one provision alone provides ‘complete control’ over the implementation of ‘firearms safety training’ in perpetuity. Please review the various amendments and our analysis and communicate to your legislators ASAP your position on this bill.  It is our understanding that current PA House rules controlling action on legislation have amendments voted on at the 2nd consideration vote and then the entire bill is voted on in 3rd consideration.  We RECOMMEND OPPOSITION to this legislation in its current form.

HB 1744 pn 2806 AGAuth-GunStudyEtc.htm

HB 1744 RCVote-Judiciary-AMend3220.htm

HB 1744 RCVote-Judiciary-AMend3962.htm

HB 1744 RCVote-Judiciary-AMend3988.htm

HB 1744 RCVote-Judiciary-AMend3989.htm

HB 1744 RCVote-Judiciary-AMend4003.htm

HB 1744 RCVote-Judiciary-RepBill-Final.htm


Thank you for your time and YOUR consideration of these issues. 


PA Gun Owners Under Attack

Governor Rendell plans to take an unprecedented step and personally attend Tuesday’s PA House Judiciary Committee meeting to attack gun owners and our constitutional freedoms by forcing bad legislation (HB 18, HB 22, and HB 29) out of committee. You need to act now!!!

Please follow this link for more information.

Immediate action is needed.



Breaking News:  ABC’s John Stossel GETS IT RIGHT!! 

If YOU have any thoughts that Gun Control will IN ANY WAY solve violent crime you MUST watch this video.

Governor Rendell and Rep. Dwight Evans and Rep. Dan Frankel PAY ATTENTION!!!!!

Video Description

On Friday's 20/20, ABC anchor John Stossel discussed the self-defensive benefits of gun ownership, debunking the myth that "gun control reduces crime." The segment aired during 20/20's recurring series, "Myths, Lies & Downright Stupidity," based on Stossel's book of the same title. Citing the recent Federal Appeals Court for DC ruling overturning Washington, D.C.'s ban on gun ownership, Stossel talked to the pro-gun plaintiff in the case, Tom Palmer, and pointed out that the murder rate in D.C. increased after the city's gun ban: "Since Washington's gun law passed, the murder rate actually increased, even while America's murder rate dropped. It's because guns can also save lives, says Palmer, as one saved his years ago in California."


watch video




PRO-GUN LEGISLATION  Summary as of Oct 2007

By enacting more anti-gun laws on the books, violent crime in our state will be virtually eliminated!  Believe it?  Well don’t, because it’s wishful thinking. For example, there is one mandatory sentence law currently on the books (Title 42, Section 9712) that makes using firearms in the commission of a crime a 5-year mandatory jail sentence. This law is routinely plea-bargained away by the courts and the DA’s.  WHY??  So, are we to believe that more gun control legislation will make a difference when current laws are being plea-bargained away?  Currently the ‘Laws Relating to Firearms’ booklet published by the state contains approximately 126 pages. This is an increase of an additional 76 pages of gun control laws that have been added since 1995. One has to ask how much is enough and, perhaps more importantly, where are we headed as a society IF we predicate freedoms based on the actions of criminals? As has been shown by the National Academy of Sciences and the Centers for Disease Control, this increase in Pennsylvania gun laws has shown no impact on crime.  Perhaps it is time to start considering a new direction in controlling crime? On the positive side we have several PRO-gun bills pending in Harrisburg that will help protect the families and property of law-abiding citizens by acting as real deterrents to criminal actions. Police officers can’t be everywhere to protect your family’s safety and even if you could make a phone call, the response time for emergency help is, at best, several minutes away in cities, in the rural area it can take over 30 minutes or more.   If that’s not bad enough, the Supreme Court has consistently ruled each and every time that police are not responsible for protecting your family or property from criminal acts. Many PRO-gun legislators recognize these flaws in current existing laws and are working with us to introduce legislation to correct these real problems.



PA Legislative Battles Over Gun Control Continue

Pennsylvania and our freedoms are yet again at a crossroads where our legislators are being faced with an onslaught of anti-gun legislation in this fall session.  The furor in the early part of this year and our subsequent news conference put them on notice that we held our freedoms in the highest regard.  Since then groups from the District Attorneys Association, the Governors office, the PA State Police, local Mayors from urban centers and selected urban police spokespersons have been lobbying for legislation that will create minefields for gun owners.  Anti-gun legislation such as HB 1536 (mandatory training before YOU can buy a gun) and HB 1744 (numerous gun related issues) and others have been quietly receiving attention in committees due to this pressure while at the same time pushing pro-gun legislation aside that we worked so hard to get introduced.

Therefore we are planning on taking another trip to Harrisburg on Tuesday Oct 23, 2007 to reinforce in legislators minds the premise that we EXPECT action on ‘our’ legislation and that we are closely watching the legislative process and every action taken on the anti-gun bills.

This will be a day devoted strictly to Legislator Interaction and Lobbying/Education that will run from 9am to 3 pm in the Capitol building and associated offices in Harrisburg.

Why is it SO important for the average gun owner to take part in this???

Certain Philadelphia legislators have even stooped to using tax money to pay for a poll that ‘supposedly’ demonstrates that even ‘gun owners’ want more gun control to include One Gun a Month, Mandatory Training, Assault Weapon Bans and other gun control concepts.

Have YOU or ANYONE you know been surveyed OR does this belief have ANY support in YOUR club?  NO!!  Well we DIDN’T think so!!

This particular individual lobbying event will be focused on dispelling these notions.  It is important to remember that there are dozens of anti-gun bills that are either pending or that have been held up in the Judiciary Committee so far.  Combining that with the fact that over 25% of the PA House is comprised of new representatives in this session with a large portion of them not having committed to a decision (much less a vote yet) on all of these Anti and PRO gun bills pending.  We feel it is imperative that we take the initiative to educate these new Reps and other incumbent Reps as to why they should support and oppose other proposed legislation. We must educate them with facts, figures, and real world realities about crime and criminal problems and how these laws could help and hurt the people of Pennsylvania. If we fail you can expect to have some of these anti-gun, anti-constitution, anti-freedom bills become laws that will negatively affect all Pennsylvanians for decades.


You personally can make a huge difference by attending and participating in this event to help educate our legislators with your fellow gun owners as to the reason why firearm ownership is so important to you.  YOUR voice could make the all the difference at this Legislator “Lobbying and Education” day in the state capital.


Please make EVERY EFFORT to join us on this most important opportunity, to protect your constitutional rights to keep and bear arms and help pass PRO-gun bills that will make PA a safer place to live for everyone except the criminals.

We PROMISE another spirited day!!


3 Township Gun Bans Stopped

            14 years ago Pennsylvania gunowners fought a pitched battle over the issue of statewide preemption of firearms laws.  It was established then and continues to this day to be the law of the land and can be found contained within Title 18 Section 6120 of the Pennsylvania crimes code.  Violation of this section of law carries a punishment of a misdemeanor one and would forever deny an individual the right to bear arms.  This is the gravity of the violation that Township managers, Councilman and supervisors face when they attempt to play politics with individual liberties.

Geographically, Ellwood city, Peters Township and Upper St. Clair share little in common except for the fact that each one of them violated Pennsylvania law when they enacted various firearms restrictions.  Leaving aside for the moment the argument that criminals will not abide by any laws that are on the books, the myopic nature of these restrictions is completely baffling.

Due to gun owner involvement every one of these communities that enacted firearms restrictions in violation of Pennsylvania law have rescinded, with much embarrassment those illegal ordinances.

We thank everyone that provided input and volunteered their personal time to re-educate these misinformed legislators and representatives!


Hunting licenses &

Social Security Numbers

On November 29, 2006 Governor Ed Rendell signed into law house Bill 2134 known as Act 160.  This legislation was intended to provide sportsmen and outdoors enthusiasts with the opportunity to acquire hunting licenses without being forced to submit their Social Security number in public and provided for alternate means of identification.

Proving that the devil is in the details government agencies were given one year to prepare for this change in license issuance procedures.  It was the responsibility of the Department of public welfare were known as DPW to submit to the federal government for an exemption to the federal law requiring the submission of Social Security numbers for licenses.  As of the writing of this report the Department of DPW has not submitted that request to this federal government and the legislative committee has been informed that this will occur by October 31 of 2007, supposedly.  The one-year period for preparations to adjust to this alternate method of acquiring a hunting license begins from the moment of approval by the federal government.

The sponsor of House Bill 2134, Representative Russ Fairchild, is angry about how poorly the implementation of this law has been handled.  In fact angry is a very weak way of explaining exactly his feelings on this issue.  He has promised to do what he can to spur along the agency to follow the laws guidelines however he points out that this agency, the Department of DPW, is controlled by the governor's office who is not a friend of gun owners or sportsmen.


At the heart of all of this is a continuing legacy of politics controlling every facet of our lives in the unwillingness of many sportsmen to understand that they must get involved if we are to change the face of politics and make our lives better.  The alternative is to submit like sheep to the ever encroaching bureaucracy that faces every facet of our lives.

The legislative committee will be contacting every congressman and Congresswoman from Pennsylvania on this issue requesting their support for an expedited granting of exemption when Pennsylvania's Department of DPW finally submits a request.  We will report on the progress of this issue as changes occur. 

    Proposed Anti-gun Legislation:

HB 0018      HB 0020           HB 0021               HB 0022

HB 0023      HB 0024           HB 0025               HB 0028

HB 0029      HB 0030           HB 0073               HB 0277

HB 0291      HB 0452           HB 0467               HB 0485

HB 0608      HB 0649           HB 0760               HR 0035


Stay Out  -  Stay Alive

 Abandoned and active mines and quarries are not playgrounds! Don't be a statistic. DEP has partnered with other government agencies and the mining industry to promote the “Stay Out - Stay Alive” campaign. The goal of this nationwide effort is to educate the public, particularly young people, about the dangers of abandoned and active mines. 

Every year, dozens of people are injured or killed at active and abandoned mine sites. In 2006, 30 people died in the U.S. while trespassing at mines and quarries. Two of these were in Pennsylvania. In 2005, 24 people died nationwide, five in Pennsylvania.

These are tragedies that could have been avoided.

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has partnered with the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration, other state agencies and the active mining industry to promote the “Stay Out – Stay Alive” campaign. The goal of this nationwide effort is to educate the public, particularly young people, about the dangers of abandoned and active mines. DEP is visiting schools and community groups to discuss the dangers of these sites.

Source: PA DEP



DEP and the health department provided the following tips to eliminate mosquito-breeding sites around the home:

· Identify and eliminate all sources of standing water that collects on your property. Mosquitoes will breed in any puddle that lasts for more than four days.

· Dispose of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots or similar water-holding containers on you property. Do not overlook containers that have become overgrown by aquatic vegetation.

· Pay special attention to discarded tires, they can serve as a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

· Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers that are left outside.


Have clogged roof gutters cleaned on an annual basis, particularly if the leaves from surrounding trees have a tendency to clog them.

· Turn over plastic wading pools when not in use. A wading pool becomes a place for mosquitoes to breed if it is not used on a regular basis.

· Turn over wheelbarrows and do not allow water to stagnate in birdbaths.

· Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with fish. Water gardens are fashionable but become major mosquito breeding grounds if they are allowed to stagnate.

· Keep swimming pools clean and chlorinated. A swimming pool that is left untended for a month becomes a source of mosquito breeding. Be aware that mosquitoes may even breed in the water that collects on swimming pool covers.

DEP has used the experience and knowledge gained over the last seven years of fighting the West Nile virus to develop strategies that efficiently target resources to maximize impact. For the last several weeks, DEP has worked with counties to conduct aggressive mosquito surveillance and, when needed, implement control activities.

DEP and county West Nile coordinators monitor the type, location and population of immature (larvae and pupae) and adult mosquitoes. This information is then used to treat those areas with high populations of mosquitoes that are known West Nile carriers.

Pennsylvania’s aggressive approach has contributed to a drop in the number of human cases of West Nile virus. The virus, when transmitted to people, can cause West Nile fever and encephalitis, an infection that can cause an inflammation of the brain.

Last year, West Nile virus was found in 48 Pennsylvania counties. So far this year, the incidence is lower. In Erie and Crawford counties, the West Nile virus has been found only in mosquitoes.

Most people bitten by an infected mosquito will never develop any symptoms, and only one in 150 who develops symptoms will develop the more serious West Nile encephalitis, a swelling of the brain that can cause serious health problems, including death.

In 2005, 25 residents contracted the disease, with no deaths attributed to the virus. In 2006, two of nine Pennsylvanians who contracted West Nile virus died. So far this year, only one human case of West Nile virus has been documented.

Currently, DEP is targeting the mosquito genus Culex. By reducing the number of Culex mosquitoes early in the season, DEP can reduce the spread of the virus.

Mosquitoes acquire the virus from infected birds. Those mosquitoes then transmit the virus to people and other animals.

Residents are reminded to report dead crows, blue jays and hawks, which can indicate the presence of the West Nile virus in an area. The West Nile control coordinators will collect a limited number of dead birds for testing through Oct. 31.

Residents who discover dead birds and would like to submit them for testing should call the local West Nile county coordinator, and in Erie County that number is 814-451-6752.

When handling dead birds, use rubber gloves. If you do not have gloves, insert your hand into a plastic bag, grasp the bird carefully and invert the bag over the bird. Each bird should be placed in tied plastic bag and then placed inside a second tied bag. If you are not submitting the bird for testing, the bagged bird can be placed in the trash. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.

For more information about West Nile virus, visit Visitors can sign up to receive automatic updates about West Nile by e-mail.

People can also call 1-877-PA-HEALTH for information.


Source: PA DEP

Pennsylvania Instant Check System (PICS) Shutdown: Lessons Learned

On August 31 Pennsylvania gun dealers and the Allegheny County sportsmen's league brought an action for injunctive relief in Commonwealth Court seeking to block the Pennsylvania State Police from shutting down the PICS system.  The necessity for this action was crystallized by the inaction of the Rendell administration through the Pennsylvania State Police to abide by Pennsylvania law which provided a clear bypass procedure for the legal sale of firearms should the PICS system become unavailable due to malfunction or other condition.

Ironically, the Pennsylvania State Police filed a brief with Commonwealth Court that included an astounding assertion that Commonwealth Court did not even have jurisdiction over a state agency.  While you absorb this creative interpretation of our form of government and accountability of it to the people through the courts, the state Police brief, unlike their public statements, NOW actually agrees with our position that there is a bypass procedure built into the law regarding the sale of firearms when the instant check system becomes unavailable.  The judge confirmed this during the hearing as well.  What makes the PSP statements in their brief surprising is that in the ad hoc committee meeting just days prior to the trial the Pennsylvania

 State Police representatives disagreed with our interpretation of the law (a view shared be most legislators and even staff counsel) on the issue of the bypass procedure.  Interestingly it seems that while the state Police have no compunction's about manipulating the truth with the elected leaders of the people their knees soften when faced with the reality of filing court documents that could hold them accountable.

While the outcome of the trial was far less than we had hoped for it is important to realize what has been gained by following through with this action.  There are four distinct areas benefit gun owners:

            The firearms sales bypass procedure of 48 hours (state law) and 72 hours (federal law) in the event of computer unavailability is legitimate and binding on the PICS operation.

            There was NO NEED to shut the system down for ‘5’ days or even ‘3’ days to perform this upgrade as it was completed in 31 hours as gun owner computer  experts testified to in Commonwealth Court.

            The NEED for the Permanent Brady Alternative option to allow Concealed Carry of Firearms permit holders to be exempt from the requirement for PICS checks when buying a firearm.

            Legislators are questioning the need for PICS altogether and are more aware of the benefits of transferring these duties to NICS (National Instant Check System).


We now know that the Pennsylvania State Police believe they are unaccountable to at least one level of a statewide court and that they REALLY DO know what the law means irrespective of their rhetoric in the public domain.  In fact considering the above one could legitimately question the credibility of the PA State Police administrators with legislators and how susceptible the PSP is to bending to political manipulation.It is important to keep in perspective the fact that this is the very same agency (the PSP) that claims that retaining records on law-abiding citizens in violation of federal law and state law is only applicable if the records are complete (?) and that the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in federal court can be ignored because the PSP doesn’t agree with what Judge

 Sanchez said their obligations were concerning notification of gun owners and purchasers as to the voluntary nature of the submission of their Social Security Numbers when purchasing a firearm or applying for concealed carry permit.

When one considers the totality of the lapses in truth and the arrogance in their conduct of operations, the costs associated with their operation of the instant check system (well over $60 million today) it appears clear to us that this agency cannot be trusted to properly manage the responsibilities in these areas or to resist political manipulation.

Pennsylvania is currently a ‘Point of Contact’ state with the National Instant Check System (NICS) which means that while the NICS system is responsible for overall control of the Instant Check process, PA and the PSP are inserted as middle men, essentially, to the background check process.  This not only adds numerous unnecessary layers of complexity to the process it also adds duplicative administrative functions.  Currently 38 states have vested in the national instant check system the responsibility for performing firearms checks perhaps it is time that Pennsylvania explore this option.

Pennsylvania & West Virginia Sign CCW Reciprocity Agreement  

As of five o'clock this past Friday the 17th of August 2007, Pennsylvania and West Virginia now have a signed concealed carry reciprocity agreement. The posted agreements will soon be uploaded to the relative websites for both states attorneys general.

I have been working for months with Jim Mullins, President of the West Virginia Citizens Defense League, and representatives of the Pennsylvania Attorney General's office to bring this to fruition.

Some gun owners have mentioned that there was a holdup or glitch in the law with some surmising that the problems related to a mandatory training requirement. This could not be further from the truth! The difficulties surrounded the West Virginia requirement for a method of verification for law enforcement when encountering an out-of-state resident who is carrying a concealed firearm.

The problem mentioned above was settled/corrected in House Bill 1717, Act 66 of 2005, (another 'poorly' understood bill) and required the Pennsylvania State police to set up a 24/7 law enforcement only LTCF verification phone number. Unfortunately the Pennsylvania State police failed to notify the Pennsylvania Attorney General's office that this procedure existed and was operational. Since I was involved with this legislation (HB 1717) I was able to easily solve this problem with both attorneys generals offices. It is important to, once again, point out here the difficulty of dealing with certain bureaucracies within the Pennsylvania State government and one of them is the Pennsylvania State police under Governor Ed Rendell.

In retrospect here I should also point out that there are a small number of gun owners who have a predilection for jumping to 'uninformed' conclusions and assumptions, and engaging in conduct that is not only harmful to the public discourse of these issues but it is unfair and demeaning to those who contribute thousands of hours of their own time in reading legislation, contacting representatives, and all the myriad of small but essential details that work to make our freedoms less restrictive. The only way we are going to become effective, truly effective, is if we all work together and pool our collective experiences into shaping public policy.

In closing I want to thank all of the members of the coalition that work so hard to advance our pro-gun legislation and to stop the anti-gun legislation from seeing the light of day. My special thanks go out to Harry Schneider of the Pennsylvania Sportsmen's Association and Melody Zullinger of the Pennsylvania Federation of Sportsmen's Clubs whose hard work over the last few years has made possible the extension of these agreements into Virginia and West Virginia as well as the others soon to come. I also want to thank Mike Stollenwerk of the Virginia Citizens Defense League for his hard work on these issues as well.

I would ask that all gun owners who support the Concealed Carry of Firearms consider sending a brief note of thanks to Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett for his help in sorting out these legal hurdles that required a fair amount of time and investigation on the part of several staff members to arrive at this agreement.



Gun Owners and Pro-Gun Legislators Draw Line in the Sand Against More Gun Control 

On April 24th over 700 gun owners gathered for a news conference in the Harrisburg Capitol Building in support of over a dozen pro-gun pieces of legislation that would clarify and strengthen the rights of citizens to defend themselves and their loved ones and to possess firearms.

This event began with the steps of the rotunda filled with pro-gun legislators who, in a surprise move, applauded the gun owners for taking the time to travel to Harrisburg in support of our freedoms.  These legislators, spearheaded by Rep. Metcalfe and Rep. Gergely, took their turns at the podium to reassert their belief in the lawful ownership of firearms and their opposition to greater infringements on our constitutional freedoms.  Because of the outpouring of legislative support it was necessary to expand the time of the news conference to accommodate all of the representatives and senators who adjusted their busy schedule to show their support.

Phase two of the day began after the news conference when the assembled gun owners broke up into teams of ten or more with the assignment of visiting the offices of legislators to emphasize the importance of our freedoms.  Armed with a synopsis of the issues, gun owner after gun owner engaged virtually every legislator throughout the day in polite but insistent discussions about gun control and the misguided nature of it.  Some anti-gun legislators chose to close their doors while some braved the situation and actually discussed their views however shortsighted.

The end result was a terrific outpouring of support for not only our freedoms but also for the many pro-gun legislators who have been getting pounded by a biased and anti-gun media.  Rep. DeWeese has stated that as Majority Leader HB 760 will not make it to the floor and he further reiterated his support for our freedoms as did Rep. John Perzel in a visit recently to the Pitcairn Monroeville Sportsmen’s Club.

One sour note occurred at the conclusion of the news conference when a group picture was being arranged on the steps of all of the rotunda of some of the gun owners on hand.  Two attendees chose this opportunity to present a message, without our permission, that was easily twisted by the media into a racist statement.  While we did not approve of or sanction this statement the most appalling actions took place after the poster was displayed.  Virtually every media outlet used this controversy as a means to try and discredit gun owners and our message in vulgar and disparaging terms. 

 The Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus presented their own approach of lambasting gun owners as extremists and committed their own tar and feathering effort.  All of this has not been lost on gun owners across this state who saw just how despicable and narrow minded our anti-gun opponents are.

In the end it was a terrific day of grassroots activism that generated a great deal of good will with legislators who feel reassured that we will not abandon them when times are tough.

I am proud of you all!  Thank you!!!

   Proposed Anti-gun Legislation:

HB 0018                HB 0020                 HB 0021    

 HB 0022              HB 0023                 HB 0024           

HB 0025                HB 0028

HB 0029                HB 0030                 HB 0073             

HB 0277

HB 0291                HB 0452                 HB 0467             

HB 0485

HB 0608                HB 0649                 HB 0760             

HR 0035



ACSL & PA Sheriffs Assoc. File Suit Over Proposed Changes to Sheriff

Click here for outcome of lawsuit

            Thursday, March 08, 2007 the ACSL and the PA Sheriffs Association filed a joint lawsuit to seek an injunction against the move by Allegheny County Council to put to the voters the proposed change to appointing the Allegheny County Sheriff.

            This action became necessary due to the unwillingness of council to address our concerns over the unconstitutionality of this change as well as the disenfranchisement of gun owners and sportsmen and women to choose their elected representatives.

  It is also a fact that Home Rule and the County Charter permits changes to the form of county government to take place every ‘five’ years.  The five year window for a legitimate petition for change will not open for years and that is why the changes to the Sheriff’s office would not take place until 2010 according to the measure passed by Council.

            Since 1701 the Pennsylvania heritage has been to elect our representatives to office while at the same time recognizing the importance of modifying the ‘form’ of government that represents us.  To consolidate the power of appointment in just a few, or one, elected officials is a rejection of one of the most important concepts of man – an elected representative government.  The answer to corruption (which has been with us since the dawn of time) is not to take the power of the people away BUT to hold those who are guilty of crimes and conduct unbecoming RESPONSIBLE for their acts.


Pennsylvania Instant Check System Shutdown:

Minor Inconvenience Or Nightmare With Long-Term Consequences? 


Beginning in early August Pennsylvania firearms dealers began receiving letters notifying them that the Pennsylvania State police intended to shut down the Pennsylvania instant check system for five days beginning on September 2 at 6 p.m. and concluding at 2 p.m. on September 6.  An uproar swept across the state from angry citizens and firearms dealers who felt that not only was this sudden notice unwarranted but also that the governor and the Pennsylvania State police were not complying with Pennsylvania law in the method with which they were conducting this shutdown. 


There are three components to this situation.  The first of which is Constitutional: in its basic form a right delayed is a right denied.  The second is one of basic criminal law: the Pennsylvania uniform firearms act which is contained within the Pennsylvania crimes codes, title 18, specifies the procedure with which firearms sales are to be handled when and if the computerized system becomes unavailable.  The Pennsylvania State police are not complying with the law and are informing dealers that there is no way to sell firearms legally unless they go through the state run instant check system.  This is completely false and an abrogation of their responsibility to comply with the law!  The third component is one of economic terrorism in as much as they are using their power over the sale of a lawful product to financially harm small business owners throughout the state.  Every gun owner should know that why you have a right to bear arms you do not have a right to buy under the current structure.  Pennsylvania has lost over 9000 gun dealers since 1994 and the trend is one of a downward spiral.  In fact in Philadelphia County there are only 19 gun dealers currently in business. 

Despite the unwillingness of the media to address the issues listed above we are continuing to pressure the legislature and the governor in every way possible to reconsider this approach to the sale of firearms. 

**Shutdown Validates Gun Owner Concerns That State Run System Could Be Used To Suspend/End Constitutional Freedoms

Beginning in 1995 through the introduction of the instant check system in 1998 Pennsylvania grassroots gun owners and their organizations continued to stress the concerns that we all shared regarding the potential arbitrariness of a state run firearms instant check system.  Considering the past history of political intrigue and manipulation and the unwillingness of the Pennsylvania State police administration to abide by the law as commonly written in the uniform firearms act, we believe that if there was to be an instant check system it should be one centralized system that was uniform in its approach to all. 

It was clear to us that despite all the rhetoric coming from the governor's office regarding their position on the Pennsylvania instant check system shutdown, the governor had his own agenda.  The ad hoc committee that convened on August 27 represented, in our view, a way to deflect criticism until there would be no opportunity to respond.  This committee was comprised of administration officials, representatives of the Pennsylvania State police, legislators, and sportsmen and gun dealer representatives.  Alternative dates for the needed upgrades and system maintenance were provided to administration officials and initially appeared that all parties agreed to a compromise approach. However, a recent [erroneous] quote by the Rendell Administration stated “In the end, the governor and the committee decided the options, which included no shutdown at all or shutting down in October or early January, would either be too costly or conflict with other scheduled computer system upgrades.”  The committee did no such thing!  That was the Governor’s conclusion, not the committee’s conclusion.  Again a deviation from the truth! 


The Allegheny County sportsmen's league legislative committee Chairman Kim Stolfer consulted with the Allegheny County sportsmen's league counsel, Rob Keenan, and league president Mike Maranche with regard to possible legal options should citizen outrage and legislative pressure fail.  A course of action was agreed upon and contact was made with George Romanoff who is president of the Pennsylvania licensed firearms dealers Association in regard to their willingness to join with the Allegheny County sportsmen's league in attempting to seek an injunction that would prohibit the Pennsylvania instant check shutdown until the procedures complied with Pennsylvania law.  A joint action was prepared and ready for use as a last-ditch effort to achieve satisfaction from the governor and the Pennsylvania State police through the judicial system. 

Since the negotiations with the governor's office achieved nothing, as expected, our request for an injunction was filed on Tuesday, August 28.  The hearing has been granted and will be held on August 31 at 10 a.m. in Commonwealth court in Harrisburg.  We have numerous experts lined up to testify including the former head of the national instant check system and some of the best computer experts from the Pittsburgh area. 


Perhaps it is time for every gun owner to finally consider that, like other states have done, it is time to terminate the Pennsylvania State instant check system and merge these duties with a national system.  Our freedoms should not be held hostage!










Gun-Control Continues To Be A Hot Topic In The PA Legislature 

In spite of all the hearings and all the scientific evidence that weighs heavily against gun control in any form, a small minority of Pennsylvania legislators spearheaded by the Pennsylvania legislative Black Caucus is demanding more gun control as an answer to the crime problems in Philadelphia.

Let's be clear there is no foundation to their claims nor is there any record of success at stopping crime for the measures that they have offered so far.  In fact the National Academy of Sciences and the Centers for Disease Control have studied 57 different measures related to gun control legislation in law throughout the United States.  The results of these peer-reviewed studies has been that not one measure has any record of success at stopping crime.



When you examine the headlines from various newspapers throughout Pennsylvania, most notable is the Philadelphia Inquirer, one finds a disturbing lack of investigative journalism. As an  example the headlines below shows some of the biased agenda of this newspaper and can be found represented in other newspapers from Pittsburgh to Reading, etc.

        Some Say Gun-Suit Loss Could Be Win The effort by 2 Council members is said to be a long shot in court but could spur changes. (July 12, 2007 Philadelphia Inquirer)

        Phila. Set To Sue For Tougher Gun Laws By Jeff Shields-Inquirer Staff Writer (July 11, 2007 Philadelphia Inquirer)

        Philadelphia Council Members Plan to Sue Legislature Over Gun Laws. By PATRICK WALTERS-(July 10, 2007 Associated Press)


        Gun Bills Get Wide Support In Pa. House By Amy Worden- (July 6, 2007 Philadelphia Inquirer)

        Gun issue won't stall budget Pa.'s black caucus leader met with the NRA. He sees progress. By Amy Worden- (July 3, 2007 Philadelphia Inquirer)

        Black Legislators, NRA Meet Over Gun Violence Problem MARK SCOLFORO-Associated Press (July 2, 2007 Philadelphia Inquirer)

Despite all of the naysayers as to the worth of gun owners visiting Harrisburg as we did before the press conference in May of this year, without that level of grassroots lobbying it is most likely that we would have already seen more restrictive gun control enacted into law.

We strongly encourage all gun owners to pay attention to these warning signs of a coordinated assault on our freedoms to cover up for the failures of the Justice Department and our courts to hold accountable those who commit the most heinous acts of crime.





Life jackets can be the determining factor between life and death in many boating safety accidents. Each year, on average, 700 people die in boating-related accidents nationwide – 8 out of every 10 victims were not wearing a life jacket. The national numbers are mirrored in Pennsylvania. In 2006, 25 boaters died; only four of them were wearing a life jacket at the time of the accident. That’s particularly unfortunate because time and time again life jackets have proven to be life savers.

The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) estimates that at least 80% of the 132 recreational boating fatalities in the Commonwealth during 1997-2006 would have survived the accident had they been wearing a life jacket.

“People tend to think of boat accidents in terms of collisions – and that is the most common type of reportable boat accident in Pennsylvania,” said Dan Martin, Boating Accident Review Officer for the PFBC. “But the accidents that are killing people are the ones where somebody falls overboard, or swamps a small boat and then ends up drowning. And those are precisely the accidents where a life jacket can make all the difference.”

And it’s not just motorboaters either; eight victims in 2006 were boating on unpowered watercraft like canoes and kayaks.

To emphasize the importance of life jackets, the theme of this year’s National Safe Boating Week is simply: “Wear It.”

Source: The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission




Pittsburgh Media (Post Gazette & KQV) Out of Control and Exposing Their True Beliefs on Gun Ownership NOW That Pennsylvania Gun Owners Are Standing United Against Gun Control 

The staffs at many of the largest Pennsylvania newspapers are doing their level best to ignore, criticize and demonize gun owners throughout Pennsylvania in the wake of our successful News Conference and Grassroots Lobbying Rally in Harrisburg.  The Pittsburgh, Post-Gazette and KQV, has one upped them in their rhetoric and they must be off their medication lately based on their anti-freedom, anti-gun editorials this weekend: 

"Lynch mob:  Some gun owners show their extremist colors"

 "Disarm America?  Here's how"

 The first Post Gazette article takes aim at attendees of a gun-rights rally in Harrisburg last week.  It has the usual claims about being unreasonable and being extremist being applied to citizens who were denouncing a bill that was so bad that even the Post Gazette said it went too far.  It also attacks a sign with a metaphorical reference to a minority gun-control legislator being hanged on the "tree of liberty."  It then has the usual calls of racism, investigation, etc. etc. etc.  

The second is simply an editorial explaining how the US can conduct nationwide gun confiscation.  After a turn-in amnesty period, this author and senior member of the PG staff is suggesting massive government force going door-to-door searching for firearms until there are none in private hands.  Mandatory fines and imprisonment for anyone still having a gun are also part of this proposal.  It's OK, however, for government to have guns and of course we ALL know criminals will obey this law. 

Then the normally level headed KQV radio station and President Dickey air an editorial that demonstrates their lack of understanding of the gun control debate and our constitutional freedoms.  This diatribe is entitled - America’s Gun Control Controversy and you can read it at the link below:

 I encourage every gun owner and outdoors enthusiast to consider the attitudes expressed here and take the appropriate action to make them aware of your feelings.  Editorials like this should not go unchallenged, but these ones, in particular the second one, are just too insane to come from a media that derives its very existence from the freedoms guaranteed by our constitution. 

If you feel like responding to the PG, you can send a LTE to , but keep it under 250 words.

 You can respond to KQV and Robert W. Dickey by sending an E-mail to this address:




Guide to New Members of General Assembly

The House Republican and Democratic Caucuses picked their Leadership teams this week and here’s the rundown. The Senate elects its Leadership next week. Also look for the link to the Guide to New Members published by the Pennsylvanians for Effective Government.


Speaker – John M. Perzel (Philadelphia)

Majority Leader – Sam Smith (Jefferson)

Whip – David Argall (Schuylkill)

Caucus Chair – Sandra Major (Susquehanna) (New)

Caucus Secretary – Jerry Stern (Blair) (New)

Caucus Administrator – Merle Phillips (Northumberland)

Appropriations Chair – Mario Civera (Delaware) (New)

Policy Chair – Mike Turzai (Allegheny) (New)

House Majority Leader Sam Smith (R-Jefferson) had this to say about the direction of his Caucus in the coming session, "The message from the members of the Republican Caucus is clear: It is time to stop the unrestrained state spending. Our other caucus priorities will be welfare reform, which means job growth, along with promoting personal responsibility and accountability."


Minority Leader – Bill DeWeese (Greene)

Whip – Keith McCall (Carbon) (New)

Caucus Chair – Mark Cohen (Philadelphia)

Caucus Secretary – Frank Dermody (Allegheny) (New)

Caucus Administrator – Dan Surra (Elk) (New)

Appropriations Chair – Dwight Evans (Philadelphia)

Policy Chair – Todd Eachus (Luzerne) (New)

House Minority Leader Bill DeWeese (D-Greene) offered these thoughts, “Our leadership team is prepared to tackle issues that matter to working families across this Commonwealth – affordable health care, further property tax relief and open and accountable government. We are eager to build upon the successes we’ve achieved, such as increasing the minimum wage, putting into motion a billion dollars in property tax cuts, investing billions more in economic stimulus, protecting our environment and making strides toward energy independence.”

Of course this assumes the Republicans maintain their 102-101 majority in seats in the House. There are still outstanding absentee ballots to be counted in Chester County at this writing.

As far as further action on legislation, keep an eye on the Senate Rules and Appropriation committee agendas for concurrence votes on bills. The Senate really does not want to do any “heavy lifting” before it adjourns for the year.

Pennsylvanians for Effective Government published a Guide to New Members this week complete with photos, bios and contact information.

Source: Pa Environment Digest 

River Sweep 

Saturday June 16, 2007

River Sweep is a riverbank cleanup of the Ohio River and its tributaries. River Sweep encompasses the entire length of the river, from its origin in at Pittsburgh to its end at Cairo, IL including 1,962 miles of shoreline and many tributaries.

During 2004, more than 21,000 volunteers from public organizations, civic groups, recreational clubs and the general public in six states bordering the river came together to collect more than 13,000 tons of trash and other debris from the banks of the Ohio River.


Since 1989, River Sweep has been organized by the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission, an interstate water pollution agency for the Ohio River Valley, along with environmental protection and natural resource agencies from Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania.




 Register Now for Great PA Cleanup – Let’s Pick It Up PA!


Cleanups are already underway across Pennsylvania, but there is still time to register for the 4th Annual Great PA Cleanup, and get free cleanup trash disposal for your group.

Groups who register by April 20 will be eligible for the free trash disposal, plus the group will be eligible for gift cards from Pennsylvania businesses sponsoring the Great PA Cleanup.

The Great PA Cleanup website has lots of information on how to set up an event, links to other cleanup organizations in your area, logos and T-shirt iron-on transfers you can use and lessons plans for teachers to helps students learn about the impact litter and rural dumping can have on the environment.

Don’t wait, register now at the 4th Annual Great PA Cleanup webpage.

Source: PA Environment Digest

Important PA Gun News & Information           

ᅠPrintable Flyer PDF

Printable Flyer Word Format

Click Here Sign Up For April 24 Trip To Harrisburg

ᅠPA anti-gun bill summary - April 2007

A must read to believe how bad it is or could be


Pro-Gun News Conference to be Held In Harrisburg—April 24th

            We all knew the challenges we would face after last year’s election and our darkest fears are being realized.  The only way to defeat this is to join together once again and show those who would take our freedoms that we will not yield.

We will join together for an early preemptive strike on our issues by having a lobbying and education day, focusing on

 freshmen legislators, and connect that with launching our pro-gun agenda, as we did last year.  Members of the Pennsylvania grassroots and gun owner’s coalition, which has been so successful for us on other issues, met with Representative Daryl Metcalfe in early December to devise a strategy for the upcoming session so that we would be prepared to deal with these issues.  The date we have agreed upon is April 24th and we will combine our meeting and lobbying with another Pro-Gun Press conference to introduce our pro-gun/pro-sportsmen agenda of legislation.  We can also use this opportunity to excoriate the anti-gun forces, legislators and issues.

The pro-gun/pro-sportsmen legislation introduced last session (minus HB 2563, 2134 & 1717 which passed) is listed below along with previous sponsors.

SB 1156 – End Gun Registration (Pippy)

HB 2946 – Emergency CCW License for Domestic Violence Victims (Metcalfe)

HB 2789 – Hunting Rights & Due Process (Petrarca)




HB 2536 – End Gun Registration (Metcalfe)

HB 2231 – Castle Doctrine (Cappelli)

HB 1181 – PA Employees & CCW (Forcier)

HB 544 – Election Code Changes (Stevenson)


There are four additional legislative concepts that we are considering for inclusion to the list above:

Turnover of PA Instant Check Responsibilities to the National Instant Check System

Legislation that would protect gun owners and prohibit seizure of firearms during a crisis or emergency like what happened in New Orleans.

Alaska style (two-tiered) Concealed Carry of Firearms System.

Eliminate redundant background checks for firearms purchased by individuals licensed to carry a firearm.

If there are any additional thoughts on legislation we welcome your thoughts.

We are deeply concerned, borne out by recent events, that with control shifting in the House that the anti-gun forces would perceive this session as their best opportunity to pass legislation which was soundly rejected during the committee of the whole last year.  Rep. Dwight Evans and his anti-gun coalition are proving our concerns to be well founded.

As you know Rep. Evans and his ‘Committee of the Whole’ cronies have put together a package of bills that includes “a ban assault weapons, limiting handgun purchases to one a month, and allow Philadelphia to establish its own gun rules” to mention a few of the proposed gun control measures.  Evans predicts that the package will have an easier time in the newly elected legislature.  "What is different is that we have 50 new members in the House who are not entrenched in their thinking, who will listen to reason," Evans said.  Evans now believes that a crackdown on gun ownership has strong support among suburban legislators as well as officials in other Pennsylvania cities such as Reading, which is also the home of the incoming Judiciary Committee chairman, Thomas R. Caltagirone (D., Berks). Caltagirone stood with Evans at his news conference and vowed that the bills would not be bottled up in the committee.  "We will get it to the floor of the House and have a vote," Caltagirone said.

To achieve these ends the House has put together a series of so-called ‘informational hearings on Gun Violence’, which are listed below.  Like last year this is a blatant attempt to manipulate public opinion by any means necessary including using the anti-gun agenda of the media to help them.

  March 16th               Wilkes Barre                  

·     March 23rd               South Philadelphia

·     March 27th             Erie        

·     March 28th              Pittsburgh  (Oakland neighborhood)

·     March 29th             Reading

o        Chester (Delaware County)

·     March 30th             West Philadelphia

·     April 13th             North Philadelphia

·     April 20th             Center City Philadelphia

·     April 27th             Harrisburg - Final policy hearing.

Please take this opportunity to provide us with your thoughts and suggestions so that we can make this effort as successful as possible. 

 WE NEED EVERY GUN OWNER TO TRY TO BE THERE ON THIS DAY!  If your club wants to send a bus (large or small) we can help you organize it for this effort.






 Reciprocity Update--3

Attorney General Tom Corbett continues to do a good job at pressing other states to enter into reciprocity agreements with PA for Concealed Carry of Firearms.  In November/06 PA signed reciprocity agreements with South Dakota and Tennessee and in the first week of January 2007another agreement with Virginia was added to PA’s list of states that have entered into reciprocity agreements for concealed-weapons permit holders.  Now Oklahoma joins this growing field of reciprocity agreements.

That means the states listed below and Pennsylvania will now honor each other's concealed weapons permits.  Pennsylvania now has reciprocity agreements with 14 states. They are:

1.      Alaska






New Hampshire

North Carolina






South Dakota



2006 PA Pro-Gun Legislation Update.

There are a number of pro-gun bills in the PA House and Senate that require your support.  Please review these legislative initiatives and be sure to contact your Representative and your PA Senators and urge him or her to cosponsor and support these measures and to move them to the floor for a vote. 

HB 2536 – End Gun Registration

SB 1156 – End Gun Registration

HB 2563 – Hunters & CCW (passed House 189-8)

HB 2231 – Castle Doctrine (Moving)

HB 1181 – PA Employees & CCW

HB 544 – Election Code Changes




States Sued Feds for Failing to Adopt Stronger Energy-Saving Standards 

Governor Edward G. Rendell today announced that the U.S. Department of Energy will set new standards to sharply increase the energy efficiency of 20 common domestic appliances, settling a lawsuit that Pennsylvania, a coalition of states, and several consumer and environmental groups filed against the federal department last year.

“Energy policies that do not emphasize conservation and efficiency are incomplete,” Governor Rendell said. “Pennsylvania is doing its part to encourage alternative energy development and reduce our dependence on foreign fuels. We are pleased the Department of Energy is stepping up to do the same. This is a tremendous victory for the environment, our economy and consumers.”

According to the Department of Energy’s own estimates, the efficiency standards covered by this agreement will reduce energy use by as much as 35 quadrillion British thermal units (BTUs) over a 30-year period. By comparison, all U.S. households combined consumed 21 quadrillion BTUs of energy in 2004.

The standards also have the potential to reduce greenhouse gases. Annual carbon dioxide emissions could be reduced by as much as 103 million metric tons a year, as well. This is the equivalent of eliminating emissions from more than 18 million cars and light trucks from America’s roads.

“Enhanced efficiency is an essential component of America’s energy future,” Environmental Protection Secretary Kathleen A. McGinty said. “Improved standards for appliances that use large amounts of electricity, natural gas and oil mean immediate environmental improvements and additional cost savings for consumers --- not to mention greater security at home.”

In the 1980s, the U.S. Congress directed the Department of Energy to periodically update the efficiency standards for a wide range of consumer products, such as furnaces, water heaters, clothes washers, home ranges and ovens, air conditioners and dishwashers. The department consistently failed in this regard, and in some cases is as much as 14 years late in developing new standards for some products. DOE has not adopted any appliance efficiency standards since January 2001.

In September 2005, Pennsylvania joined a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court’s Southern District of New York in an effort to compel the Department of Energy to catch up. The lawsuit sought a binding schedule for the overdue standards.

States joining the suit include California, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Vermont and Wisconsin. Other parties include the California Energy Commission, New York City, the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Massachusetts Union of Public Housing Tenants and the Texas Ratepayers Organization to Save Energy.

Energy efficiency standards play an important role in ensuring affordable, reliable energy. Energy efficient appliances reduce air pollution, global warming and other environmental problems associated with the generation of electricity while saving money for residential and commercial consumers.

The agreement covers the following products, by category and standard deadline:

· Room air conditioners -- June 2011

· Central air conditioners and heat pumps -- June 2011

· Water heaters -- March 2010

· Pool heaters -- March 2010

· Direct heating equipment -- March 2010

· Furnaces and boilers -- September 2007

· Dishwashers -- March 2009

· Clothes dryers -- June 2011

· Fluorescent lamp ballasts -- June 2011

· Ranges and ovens -- March 2009


· Additional lamps -- June 2009

· Incandescent reflector lamps -- June 2009

· Fluorescent lamps -- June 2009

· Packaged air conditioners and heat pumps -- September 2008

· Packaged boilers -- February 2007

· Instantaneous water heaters -- February 2007

· Medium-sized motors -- June 2011

· High intensity discharge lamps -- June 2010

· Electric distribution transformers -- September 2007

· Small motors -- February 2010

For more information on Governor Rendell’s energy initiatives, visit the department’s Web site at, Keyword: “Energy.”

Source: DEP


Pro-Gun News Conference to be Held In Harrisburg—April 24th

            Building on the success of last year’s pro-gun news conference, gun owners and pro-gun legislators will be introducing our package of pro-gun legislation on April 24th.  This legislation will contain an expanded list of bills that address last year’s uncompleted legislative initiatives as well as several new ones.

            More on this effort in the March Report.


County Council Votes to Send Sheriff Position to the Voter’s to Decide

            This past Tuesday, Allegheny County Council voted to send to a referendum vote the issue of electing or appointing a Sheriff.  Despite evidence presented to Council on the consistently clear intent of our founding fathers on the issue of election of representative officials by the citizens, they chose the politically expedient route of handing this controversial issue off to the ballot machine.

            It should be made clear that there hasn’t been any fact finding, fiscal impact studies or hearings to gauge the support of the people for this measure.  Political powerhouses like Elsie Hillman and others are supporting this change without any indication as to why.

            Gunowners should be especially concerned since this office is the highest law enforcement office and is directly responsible for the issuance of concealed carry licenses.

            At this point there is nothing left to do but to awaken our fellow sportsmen and women and gun owners to this change and choice in the Primary ballot.




Rendell Budget Speech Draws Cross-Hairs on Gun Owners

            In his recent budget address, Governor Rendell focused direct attention on his long held goal of attacking gun owner’s rights.  His statements covered the following:

  And while it is not a formal part of the Prescription for Pennsylvania, any serious effort to improve the health and safety of our fellow citizens must also include a comprehensive effort to address the epidemic of gun violence that is occurring

 throughout the Commonwealth. Just last week, the front page of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported, "Pa.'s black homicide victim rate leads nation." A new report from the Violence Policy Center in Washington revealed that Pennsylvania's homicide rate among African-Americans is more than one and one-half times the national average, and that nearly 86 percent of these homicides involved handguns.

Gun violence is not just a Pittsburgh problem, or a Philadelphia problem. In fact, in 2005, the rate of gun violence rose twice as fast in the rest of the state than it did in Allegheny and Philadelphia Counties. Gun violence is destroying the sense of community that connects us all. Ladies and gentlemen, is this the way we want to lead the nation? As a national homicide headline?

As Governor, I have attacked the problem of gun violence on several fronts. Together, we have increased state funding to support the efforts of local police departments and law enforcement agencies to fight violence in our cities, with a particular focus on cities dealing with rising gun violence. We have also dramatically increased resources in public education, helping young people understand the consequences of violence and the need to make better choices.

But we must do more. I urge the General Assembly to address the issue of gun violence in the following ways: first, by upgrading possession of a stolen gun to a felony, so that the penalties can be significantly upgraded. Today, the penalty for possession of a stolen television is more severe than the penalty for possession of a stolen gun. Second, I urge passage of  legislation making it mandatory to report the loss or theft of a gun to police, which will have a dramatic impact on illegal gun trafficking in Pennsylvania. We require you to report the theft of a car; we should do no less for the theft of a gun. Third, I will support legislation that enables local communities to enact their own restrictions on the flow, distribution and use of handguns. Fourth, it is time for this state to end gun trafficking by enacting a one handgun a month law. Such legislation will put a stop to gun runners who sell so many of our crime guns and will put no burden on lawful gun owners who can still purchase 12 handguns a year - or 24 handguns if they are married.

In a recent column in The Philadelphia Inquirer, an unnamed Pennsylvania legislator said that in a secret ballot the General Assembly would pass one gun a month by a three to one margin. So I call on you to show the courage of your convictions and rid Pennsylvania once and for all of the devastation of gun trafficking.

            If any of us were uncertain about what we would see from a lame duck Rendell administration it should be clear to all right now that we are in for a terrific fight ahead of us.


CCW Reciprocity Update

Attorney General Tom Corbett continues to press other states to enter into reciprocity agreements with PA for Concealed Carry of Firearms.  In the past month (November/06) reciprocity agreements with South Dakota and Tennessee have been signed adding them to PA’s list of states that have entered into reciprocity agreements for concealed-weapons permit holders.

That means the states listed below and Pennsylvania will now honor each other's concealed weapons permits.  Pennsylvania now has reciprocity agreements with 12 states. They are:

1.      Alaska






New Hampshire

North Carolina

South Dakota








There are a number of pro-gun bills pending in Congress that require your action.  Please review these legislative initiatives and be sure to contact your U.S. Representative at (202) 225-3121, and your U.S. Senators at (202) 224-3121, and urge him or her to cosponsor and support these measures.  Additional contact information can be found using the "Write Your Representatives" feature at

. H.R. 5092-This bill would improve BATFE's process for punishing the few FFLs who violate the law and it would establish guidelines for BATFE investigations.  This bill was drafted in large part to address recent BATFE abuses at Richmond, Va.-area gun shows highlighted in hearings before the U.S. House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security.  Action is expected on this bill next Wednesday, June 7, so please contact your Representative immediately and urge him or her to cosponsor and support this important measure!

. H.R. 5005-This measure will codify congressional policies, roll back restrictions, and correct errors in federal firearm laws.  Action is expected on this bill next Wednesday, June 7, so please contact your Representative immediately and urge him or her to cosponsor and support this important measure!

. H.R. 5013/S. 2599-Legislation to prohibit the confiscation of lawfully owned firearms during states of emergency.   Would guarantee legal recourse for victims of illegal gun seizures

. H.R. 1384-This bill would remove several antiquated and unnecessary restrictions imposed on interstate firearms business since 1968.  Action is expected on this bill next Wednesday, June 7, so please contact your Representative immediately and urge him or her to cosponsor and support this important measure!

. H.R. 1288/S. 1082-Legislation to repeal the draconian D.C. gun ban and restore the right of lawful District residents to own firearms to defend themselves and their families. 

Gun Owners of America
Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408


Pro-Gun/Pro-Sportsmen Bills (H.B. 2563 & H.B. 2134) Signed Into Law

 Culminating a year of furious activity and controversy, the PA Senate swiftly passed House Bills 2563 (Concealed Carry while hunting) and 2134 (Social Security Numbers on Licenses) at the urging of the Allegheny County Sportsmen’s League, the PA Sportsmen’s Association and the PFSC.

To review, H.B. 2563 (Rep. Staback-Sponsor) provides for the ability of ‘any’ hunter pursuing Title 34 activities to legally carry a concealed firearm, including semi-automatic firearms.  This new option does not allow hunters to use these firearms to harvest game with them; they are ONLY for self-protection.

House Bill 2134 (Rep. Fairchild-Sponsor) would remove the requirement that Social Security Numbers must be submitted when applying for recreational licenses such as hunting or fishing licenses.  Instead of your Social Security Number you would submit your drivers license number upon application for the license and then the agency would have to specifically request that PennDot provide your SSN to fulfill the requirements of the federal law on deadbeat dads.  These prohibitions would also apply to health care providers and their procedures as well.

H.B. 2134 is a stopgap measure and does not eliminate the disclosure of SSN numbers it does eliminate the ‘public’ use and submission of them.  We still must eliminate the ‘requirement’ to use them for recreational licenses for any reason in accordance with the federal law governing the use of these numbers.

Reps. Staback and Fairchild pushed very hard for these bills and they passed the House with wide margins and in the Senate, Senator John Pippy was VERY successful in applying the necessary pressure to ensure that these bills were brought to the floor at a time when NO legislation was supposed to be considered.

Please send a note of thanks to Rep. Staback, Rep. Fairchild and Senator Pippy for their steadfast support and hard work on these bills!!!




The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed adding or expanding hunting opportunities on seven national wildlife refuges. The proposals, impacting four states, were published in the Federal Register on July 24. A public comment period will end August 16. "We are committed to expanding hunting and fishing opportunities wherever we can," said agency director H. Dale Hall. In 2005, approximately 2.3 million Americans hunted on national wildlife refuges.


Try Composting Leaves and

Yard Waste This Fall

 Raking leaves and trimming back trees and plants for the winter is a familiar Fall ritual. Instead of burning yard waste or putting it out for the trash, why not compost? 

As much as 34 percent of household waste in Pennsylvania is made up of organics, most of which can be composted. 

Many communities have organized yard waste composting facilities residents can use to take branches and other yard waste items. Check with your municipality or county recycling coordinator for the closest one to you.

Of course you don’t have to go further than your own backyard to set up an efficient composting operation. 

Don’t know how? Checkout these online resources –

· Composting In My Backyard

· Guide to Home Composting

· Find a Community Composting Site 

Source: Pa Environment Digest  



HOUSE PASSES ATF REFORM BILL . . . With a 277-131 vote, the U.S. House of Representatives last week passed HR 5092, the "Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) Modernization and Reform Act of 2006." The legislation, which represents a major advance in protecting the rights of firearms retailers, now heads to the Senate. Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) have threatened to stallSenate consideration. The bill will bring consistency to ℑATF enforcement actions and provide ATF with additional compliance tools short of license revocation.  See how your representative voted on HR 5092 and contact them.


Gun Owners STOP Anti-Gun Assault of the Decade!

The much anticipated [dreaded!] Committee of the Whole has come and gone but the fallout from it will be felt for months if not years.  Gun owners and statewide sportsmen’s groups came together as part of a well thought out and carefully implemented strategy that took months to develop.  Working quietly with pro-gun legislators of both parties, led by Rep. Daryl Metcalfe and Rep. Marc Gergely, we were able to prepare our arguments and to contact gun owners throughout the state to advise them of the dangers that this Committee of the Whole presented to our Freedoms and to the safety of our communities.

The idea of a Committee of the Whole session started as a result of the anti-gun legislators attaching their gun bans to every piece of crime legislation that came through the house this past spring.  In response, our freedom loving legislators would propose pro-gun initiatives.  With the house having to debate this endless barrage, the leadership decided to have a hearing on all the initiatives at a single session- hence the “Committee of the Whole.”  In this way each proposal would be discussed and a straw vote taken.  Those that were defeated would die there.  Those that passed the straw vote would then go on for more formal consideration.  This also gave Dwight Evans (D-Philadelphia) a platform to advance his campaign for mayor.

Opposing gun owners were virtually every ‘national’ and every statewide anti-gun organization, a number of mayors from various cities including Mayor Street from Philadelphia and even Mayor Bloomberg (the anti-gun Mayor from New York City).  The City of Philadelphia and Mayor Street sent to Harrisburg 25 buses (paid for by taxpayers money) filled with about 1200 individuals who were given a free trip to and from Harrisburg, free breakfast, free lunch, free hats and free shirts. These individuals included Philadelphia sanitation workers with a paid day off and the notorious Black Panther militant anti-law enforcement group.

Our game plan was kept simple and straightforward:  If the anti-gunners could use this forum to advance their agenda, so could we. We gave the legislators led by Daryl Metcalfe (R-12) and Marc Gergely (D-35) a host of anti-crime concepts that did not infringe upon our rights and eliminated the spider web of useless and unnecessary regulations used to ensnare law abiding citizens.

Conservative Talk Show hosts like Jim Quinn & Rose and others were invaluable providing a platform and publicity for what we needed to do and mobilizing our base.

The plan all came together the morning of the 26th.  Our advance team was in place, we met with supportive legislators early on the 26th gave them a detailed briefing and a set of talking points.  We had a communication network setup for unforeseen developments on the house floor.  Group leaders were to arrive and get their contact lists and instructions.  After the groups made their rounds of all legislative offices and met with legislators they were to return to Rep. Metcalfe’s office for additional instructions and key action planning points. 

Unfortunately as with all plans there is always a hitch.  The legislative leadership decided to convene an hour early, at 10AM.  This required us to modify and adapt our schedule as we didn’t get to brief the group leaders as well as we would have liked on the final shortened talking points and our registration table didn’t have time to coordinate volunteers fully lest we loose the opportunity for those that traveled to Harrisburg to lobby legislators.  Because our people got to the capitol early and were self-starters, we were able to make our contacts in this somewhat shortened time frame.  The opposition on the other hand was taken totally off guard.

The final analysis of the outcome of the Committee of the Whole shows that we stopped 31 anti-gun pieces of legislation and the pro-gun bills all passed.  Only one anti-gun bill passed and that one required subterfuge on the part of the Representative (McGeehan) to sneak it through at the last minute on October 3rd.  The media, Governor Rendell and the Philadelphia legislative caucus are reeling from the beating they took and the rejection of gun control by an overwhelming number of legislators from both parties.

On behalf of the coalition I thank you all for your support and hard work!




 “We want campers to obtain firewood locally and not transport it into our state parks and forestlands,”
said Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Michael DiBerardinis. “We are especially targeting our request to campers coming from states where the emerald ash borer—a forest pest that could prove deadly to our ash trees—already has been discovered.”

The ash borer has been identified in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, and the Canadian Province of Ontario. Also, the Asian long-horned beetle, another insect easily spread in firewood, exists in Illinois, New York, New Jersey and Toronto, Canada.

“We know campers coming from these already infected areas may not hear our warning, so we’re hoping Pennsylvanians who often share cabins or campsites with them spread the message, ‘Leave the firewood at home; buy it or cut it locally,’” said DiBerardinis. “Not only is it illegal to move wood from a quarantined area, it’s not a wise idea to move any firewood anywhere in the state, especially with the ongoing threat of other insects and diseases to our state’s forests.”

Usually visible from May to August, the adult emerald ash borer beetles are slightly less than one-inch long, thin and bright metallic green in color. The beetle, which feeds in the tissues under the bark of ash trees, has claimed more than 10 million trees in Michigan alone.

If infected firewood was transported into Pennsylvania, the emerald ash borer could emerge next spring and begin feeding on ash trees. It prefers green and white ash but will target all ash trees, regardless of whether they are healthy or stressed. First identified in North America in 2002, the emerald ash borer causes the girdling and death of branches and entire trees.

DCNR’s Bureau of Forestry participates in a multi-agency task force assembled to detect and control this invasive threat to Pennsylvania ash trees. Other cooperating members of the task force include the state Department of Agriculture, Penn State Cooperative Extension, the USDA Plant Protection and Quarantine and the USDA Forest Service.

Overseeing 117 state parks, most of which offer camping, the Bureau of State Parks has posted warnings and information at campgrounds and on DCNR’s web site: (click State Parks). Similar information soon will be passed on to campers reserving sites online.

Since 2003, DCNR has been surveying for the early detection of emerald ash borer on state-owned forestlands. That same year, 18 surveillance sites were established in Erie County. Surveillance efforts were expanded in 2004 to 20 sites in 13 counties: Beaver, Bradford, Bucks, Butler, Crawford, Erie, Fayette, Greene, Mercer, Somerset, Tioga, Venango and Washington.

The state Department of Agriculture and USDA Plant Protection and Quarantine also are conducting surveys in nurseries and urban areas. No emerald ash borer or Asian long-horned beetles have been detected in Pennsylvania.

Signs of emerald ash borer infestation include upper crown dieback, woodpecker damage, “S”-shaped galleries under the bark and "D"-shaped emergence holes. To report possible infested trees in Pennsylvania, contact DCNR’s Division of Forest Pest Management at (717) 948-3941, or; or the Department of Agriculture toll free at (866) 253-7189.


PA Lawmakers Set Special Day Session on Guns

Anti-gun lawmakers will get a shot this Fall to advance new gun laws in a rare, one-day House session in the Pennsylvania legislature, according to The York Daily Record.

Rep. Dwight Evans (D-Philadelphia) brokered a deal with House Republican leaders to hold the session on crime and violence Sept. 26. The House will convene in a Committee of the Whole, which allows House members to debate and take unofficial “straw votes” meant to show how much support exists for proposals.

House Majority Leader Sam Smith (R-Jefferson) agreed to the session as a vote neared on the state budget. Several Democrats were eyeing procedural maneuvers on bottled-up gun bills that threatened to delay the budget, and the one-day session in September appeased both sides.

Key bills that Evans and his allies want to move include a “one-gun-a-month” proposal and a measure that would give Philadelphia power to enact its own gun laws.
The newspaper said the session is the latest strategy by anti-gun lawmakers who are usually at odds with Republicans who control the legislature.

The Sept. 26 session will be the first high-profile push for new gun laws since Gov. Ed Rendell formed a special commission two years ago.



Gun Owners of America

Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408

On Tuesday, GOA-supported legislation passed the House of Representatives by a whopping 322-99 vote. The bill -- introduced by Rep. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) -- is similar to the Vitter amendment which passed the Senate earlier this month.

GOA has kept its members abreast of Jindal's important bill (HR 5013), as it would legislatively block federal agents from confiscating firearms during an emergency. Jindal's language would even give aggrieved gun owners a cause of action in federal court to recover their firearms and would recompense victorious plaintiffs for their attorney's fees.

Both the House and Senate have passed Emergency Protection language, albeit in different forms. So GOA will keep you updated on progress related to this important legislation.

You can go to to see how your Representative voted on the Jindal bill.

In other news, the House Judiciary Committee was supposed to consider McCarthy's Brady Enhancement legislation, H.R. 1415, this past Wednesday. This bill will spend millions of dollars to further prop up the unconstitutional Brady Law and would allow the federal government to troll through state misdemeanor, diversion, psychiatric, tax, and even library records -- all for the purpose of finding new reasons to seize guns from law-abiding Americans.

Thankfully, there are some Representatives who are getting your message of opposition loud and clear. A few Republicans on the committee are ready to vote against the bill, but we don't know yet if it will be enough to kill it in committee.

While the bill is not scheduled to come up until September, GOA asks you to keep an eye out for future alerts on this subject throughout the summer. We will be asking many of you to contact your Representative in the district -- when he or she is home during the August recess.

Your response in opposition to the McCarthy bill is important because GOA is the only national pro-gun group opposing the bill in Congress.



In recent years the United Nations has sought to advance policies that could affect the individual's right to bear arms, and members of the U.S. Congress have taken notice, attempting to tie American purse strings to U.N. action. Legislators from Louisiana, Sen. David Vitter and Rep. Charles Boustany, have introduced S. 1488 and H.R. 3436, respectively, each of which would require that the President of the United States certify to Congress each year that the U.N. has taken no action to "restrict, attempt to restrict, or otherwise adversely infringe upon the rights of individuals in the United States to possess a firearm or ammunition…" If the president cannot provide that certification, the legislation would allow for the refusal to submit any funding to the U.N. for that fiscal year.  


The Legislative committee of Allegheny County Sportsman League extends our deepest appreciation to all gun owners that participated in communicating their beliefs and support of our right to bear arms to state legislators throughout Pennsylvania.  This outpouring of support for the 2nd Amendment and Article 1 Section 21 and the concerns over the Philadelphia legislators attempts to enact more gun control laws that restrict constitutional right to keep and bear arms weighed heavily on legislators as they soundly rejected the concept of gun control.  We also extend an extra special commendation as well as our sincere and deepest thanks to all gun owners that took the day off work to travel to Harrisburg on Sept 26 to voice their concerns directly to legislators and their staff.  Our efforts made a HUGE difference in this epic battle to prevent more of our rights from being stripped away under the guise of trying to curb illegal use of guns by criminals. 

As always we will work with any and all legislators regardless of party that want to prevent crime and lock up criminals that use and acquire guns illegally against the citizens of this commonwealth but they were also put on notice that we will NEVER surrender our freedoms for some temporary illusion of security.

Please take the time to read the attached preliminary report by Harry.  More information and a complete wrap up will follow very soon.


Thanks again to all that made your voices heard in Harrisburg on this day!


Semper Fidelis!

Kim Stolfer - ACSL Legislative committee chairman

(412) 221-3346, Home Phone

(412) 257-1099, Home Fax

(412) 352-5018, Cell


Michael Christeson - ACSL Legislative committee vice chairman.



Safe Boating

The National Safe Boating Council, working with states across the country, has created a web site that helps deliver boating safety messages in a fun and funky way. The Pennsylvania page can be accessed at When accessing the web page, users will be greeted with an upbeat music video with an important boating safety message for kids. Youngsters can navigate the site with the help of a group of young “Boating Sidekicks”: Abby, Ahoy, Ben, Megan, Oscar, Sally and Seth.

Along with covering basics like life jackets, boating terms, and an introduction to paddling, the site offers a variety of fun activities, games and animations that entertain while instructing. Coloring pages, flash cards, mazes and interactive quizzes are all part of the experience. Sailing through the site with a child is also an easy way to brush up on important information for adults as well. For example, parents should remember that in Pennsylvania, all children 12 years of age or younger are required to wear a life jacket when underway on a boat that is 20 feet in length or less and all canoes and kayaks.





The upcoming gun control debate, called a ‘Committee of the Whole’, scheduled for September 26th could be the defining battle for freedoms and responsible government not only in Pennsylvania but also for the entire East Coast.

Anti-gun legislators, led by Representative Dwight Evans (D-Philadelphia), in close cooperation with virtually all forms of PA media, are pushing new gun control measures in Harrisburg .  The Pennsylvania Democratic Party funded a poll of 400 likely voters that indicates suburban residents are concerned about gun violence.  In a calculated attempt to manipulate this worthless poll, Rep. Evans has stated that "legislators should move beyond boundary lines and party labels to take action on gun control."

Gun Control legislation expected to be addressed include: "One-Gun-a-Month" legislation, elimination of statewide preemption, semi-automatic firearm bans as well as other anti-gun legislation which infringe on your rights as law-abiding gun owners.

The time is NOW

ACSL member clubs and Gun Owners all across Pennsylvania need to consider traveling to Harrisburg on this day as well as calling and/or writing their State Legislators about this travesty of common sense.  Send a STRONG message that stiff punishment of criminals who commit crimes with guns is the key to stopping crimes committed with firearms.  

We also will urge Legislators for the  passage of common sense gun laws.

HB 2536 - End Gun Registration

SB 1156 End Gun Registration

HB 2231 Castle Doctrine

HB 2563 Hunters & CCW - Passed house 189-8 thanks for your help

 We are establishing a central meeting point of perhaps the same place the Parkway Center Mall in Greentree for the time being.  Departure time should be 5AM and we are working on a parking plan right now.  With the number of different vehicles we have set aside we have more flexibility as to locations to leave from so if there is a hot spot of support we can delegate one vehicle to that area by itself.

Price will be 25 dollars for transportation to and from the event.

Michael Christeson

(724)-873-0605, Home Phone

Kim Stolfer

(412) 221-3346, Home Phone

(412) 257-1099, Home Fax

(412) 352-5018, Cell

Please contact one of us to secure a seat for the most important day, see attached info on what they have planed for that day.

Committee Of The Whole. Click here to see poster. 


PA Legislative Victory:

House Bill 2563

In a surprisingly easy fashion, House Bill 2563 passed in the House of Representatives by a margin of 189-8. In fact every Democrat voted for it and this should bode well for us once it reaches the Senate. The next move is on to the Senate Game and Fish committee, which is chaired by Senator John Pippy.

Our THANKS to all of you who called to make this happen. 




The U.S. House of Representatives voted to overturn a recently enacted law requiring safety locks to be distributed with all handguns sold in the U.S., Reuters reports. The provision was included in the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, signed last year by President Bush. The amendment to overturn the requirement was attached to a law enforcement spending bill, which has yet to be considered by the Senate.



 A Sunday U.S. News and World Report story discussed how politicians are beginning to see that restricting the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans is a political loser. A spokesman for the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research suggested that gun-control activists turn their sites on targeting corrupt firearms dealers. While sportsmen, firearms enthusiasts and the industry itself have long supported a zero-tolerance policy and aggressive prosecution of dealers engaged in illegal activity, NSSF will remain vigilant in ensuring that any and all investigations are conducted through the appropriate agency (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) and not political pawns of the gun-ban lobby, such as New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.


River Sojourn to Highlight Rivers of the Year Designation

Pittsburgh’s Three Rivers, which recently received “Rivers of the Year” designation by the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, will be the site of the Three Rivers Sojourn – a three day paddling and boating event scheduled for August 10-12. “The sojourn will be a great opportunity to get out on the rivers and to view the region in a whole new positive light,” said Davitt Woodwell, Vice President for the Pennsylvania Environmental Council.

Sojourners will paddle on the Allegheny River from Harmarville to Heinz Field on August 10, and will paddle the Monongahela from McKeesport to Homestead on August 11. The event ends on August 12 with an Ohio River cruise on the Pittsburgh Voyager. Each day of the trip includes educational presentations and discussions from local experts about the region’s history, recreational amenities, and environmental issues. Dinnertime entertainment is planned also. Overnight accommodations are available at Camp Guyasuta in Sharpsburg.

The Three Rivers Sojourn is open to the public. Cost is $60 per person per day, which includes three meals, snacks, canoe/kayak, and limited shuttle service. Lodging at Camp Guyasuta is an additional cost per day. Space is limited and registration ends on August 4th, so participants are encouraged to register early.

Sojourn activities are being coordinated by Venture Outdoors, Pennsylvania Environmental Council, Pittsburgh Voyager, Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds & Rivers (POWR) and the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

For more information and to register, contact Venture Outdoors at 412-255-0564 or



In a companion move in the Senate, Senator Leanna Washington attempted to move Senate bill 1241 in the Judiciary Committee. Senator Greenleaf are arranged a compromise with Senator Washington to hold hearings on gun violence all across the state so that her concerns with the violence in Philadelphia could be brought to the public's attention. These hearings are forecast to be held in Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, and Philadelphia on dates that are as of yet undetermined. The Allegheny County Sportsmen's League is working with Senator Greenleaf’s office to bring in experts in the field of sociology, a criminology and Criminal Justice for these hearings. 



Philadelphia Anti-Gun Caucus Forces

Consideration Of Gun Control

Throughout the last two months and especially since the primary the Philadelphia caucus which is made up primarily of anti-gun representatives has been holding legislature hostage by threatening to amend every Title 18 crimes code bill with some form of gun control. In a showdown between Leadership and this Philadelphia caucus a compromise reached that would allow them to have a full day to discuss gun control issues on the floor of the House. This event will take place on September 26th and will be called a Committee of the Whole, which will allow consideration of issues and votes to be taken although the vote’s will not be recorded against a legislators name and will be considered nothing more than a sense of the House of Representatives.  



BELLEVUE, WA – The State of Pennsylvania is practicing age discrimination against older firearms owners under a statute that requires people licensed to carry concealed firearms to provide two character references as part of the application process, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) said today.  

“The fundamental problem with such a requirement,” noted CCRKBA Executive Director Joe Waldron, “is that older citizens, including some of our members, are experiencing difficulty complying with this requirement, because their previous references have passed away.”

He called the requirement an unconscionable slap in the face to a generation of citizens who have helped build the state, and in many cases, served their country at times of war to defend their home state and all of its citizens.  

“These law-abiding citizens are faced with a serious flaw in the statute,” he explained, “because they have a problem soliciting new references. Their younger neighbors are sometimes reluctant to act as character references for someone they may not know very well, due to generational and perhaps cultural differences.  

“In such cases,” Waldron stated, “the reference requirement becomes a form of age discrimination.”  

In a letter to House Judiciary Chairman Dennis M. O’Brien, and Senate Judiciary Chairman Stewart Greenleaf, Waldron suggested a solution to this problem would be a waiver of reference requirements on concealed pistol license renewal applications.  

“The test of good character would have already been met by virtue of an individual’s having held a license previously,” Waldron observed. “A license to carry firearms is, in itself, a de facto certificate of good conduct.  

“At a time in their lives when citizens become more vulnerable to crime,” he concluded, “the state should not come along and deprive them of the means of personal protection. This is a loophole in the law that seriously undermines the ability of our seasoned citizens to retain their independence, dignity and safety.”


06/06/15 Children And Gun Safety: Education Is The Key

If you have a gun in your home, particularly if hunting is an important part of family recreation, teach your children to use guns safely and responsibly. When you talk to your child, stress the dangers involved and the difference between toy guns and real guns. Once the mystery surrounding firearms is gone, potential incidents can be avoided.


06/06/05 The Stearns/Boucher/Allen Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Bill

The national Right-to-Carry (RTC) reciprocity bill, H.R. 4547 (introduced by U.S. Reps. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., and Rick Boucher, D-Va.) and S. 3275 (introduced by Sen. George Allen, R-Va.) would allow any person with a valid concealed firearm carrying permit or license, issued by a state, to carry a concealed firearm in any other state.



06/06/09 Sportsmen’s Groups Back Hunting Fees Increase

Several sportsmen's groups told a legislative panel they are willing to pay more to hunt in Pennsylvania, but worry that proposals to raise license fees won`t be enough to help the state Game Commission in the long term.


Extension of Periods during which Boats are Limited to Slow, No Wake Speed

 The Executive Director of the Fish and Boat Commission (Commission), acting under the authority of 58 Pa. Code §103.3(d) (relating to restriction for special areas), has taken action to extend the periods during which boats are limited to slow, no wake speed on the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio Rivers (Three Rivers) in the City of Pittsburgh.  

Currently, under 58 Pa. Code §111.2(c) (relating to Allegheny County), boats are limited to slow, no wake speed from the Fort Pitt Bridge over the Monongahela River and the Fort Wayne (Norfolk Southern) Bridge over the Allegheny River to the West End Bridge over the Ohio River during certain periods, including the period from 3 p.m. on the day preceding July 4 until midnight of the holiday. 

The Executive Director has taken action to limit boats to slow, no wake speed in this area from 3 p.m. on June 30, 2006, to 7 a.m. on July 5, 2006. 

The Executive Director also has taken action to limit boats to slow, no wake speed in this area from 3 p.m. on July 7, 2006 to 7 a.m. on July 12, 2006.



 Self-Defense Proposal Triggers Debate

Gun rights advocates are applauding so-called "stand your ground" laws. This year, nine states have enacted such laws, following Florida, which led the way with legislation passed in 2005. Pennsylvania is among more than a dozen other states considering joining the trend.


 D.C. Court Dismisses Lawsuit Against Gun Makers

A lawsuit in the District against gun makers was dismissed today by a D.C. Superior Court judge who ruled that the suit was precisely the sort of claim that a new federal law was intended to block.



H.R. 1415, the NICS Improvement Act of 2005

This bill, cosponsored by Reps. John Dingell (D-Mich.), Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.) and others, would improve availability of criminal history and other records for conducting background checks on firearm buyers. It also addresses concerns over past implementation actions by the FBI, prohibits the FBI from charging a user fee for background checks on gun buyers, and directs the General Accounting Office to audit and report to the Congress on past expenditures for NICS record improvements.

Many of the problems encountered in recent legislative debates over gun control especially the 1999 debate on gun show regulation center on the inadequacy of NICS records. Inaccurate or incomplete records delay firearm purchases and result in wrongful denials of law-abiding buyers.

This bill would help fix those problems. It sets specific goals and timetables and details the records improvements that are required. Unfortunately, the language in the original Brady Act may have allowed the previous $200 million intended for this purpose to be spent on largely unrelated projects an issue addressed by the GAO audit provision.

Importantly, H.R. 1415 provides for the removal of disqualifying records on individuals who are no longer prohibited from possessing a firearm. For instance, if a person was at one time committed to a mental institution, but was then found not to have any mental illness, that record should be removed from instant check databases. Additionally, in non-mental health areas, examples exist of a number of cases where arrest or conviction records have been left on file even after charges were dropped or rights were restored.

The core of the bill is a requirement that federal agencies and states provide all relevant records to the FBI for use in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). This would generally include records of convicted felons, fugitives from justice, persons convicted of misdemeanor crimes of domestic violence, and persons subject to domestic restraining orders, as well as federal records of illegal aliens. It also requires removal of records that are incorrect, or irrelevant to determining a persons eligibility to receive a firearm.




Industry expert George G. Krivosta, with the Suffolk County, N.Y., Crime Laboratory, has had a peer-reviewed article on micro-stamping, the process that theoretically would imprint the make, model and firearm serial number on a spent cartridge casing, published in the journal of the Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners. The article in the AFTE Journal discusses the fallibility of the sole-source system upon which possible legislation in California is based. "While the proposed concept seems too simple to fail," Krivosta wrote about the manufacturer’s simplistic explanation, "the experience of this examiner suggested further examination and testing would be necessary before the firearms industry embraces the proposed solution." The article addressed three key questions on the reliability of the proposed system, and the author wrote, “Presentations previously made addressing these questions seemed quite promising. The review of test-fired specimens from an unfinished research project by a member of the Rhode Island State Crime Laboratory seemed quite the opposite.” Legislation under consideration in the California state legislature was withdrawn last year, but may be considered again this year.




Local business owners are attempting to develop an indoor shooting range in Jackson Township, Pa., and a public

meeting will be held by the township’s supervisors to discuss this matter on Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Seneca Valley High School auditorium in Harmony. The NRA-ILA reports that opponents have saturated surrounding neighbors with false claims and propaganda and urges pro-range attendance, as well as phone calls to the supervisors at 724-452-5581 and –5582.



River Sweep 2006 

On Saturday, June 17, 2006, thousands of volunteers will clean up our riverbanks. Volunteers will come from environmental organizations, civic groups, recreational clubs, scout troops, local businesses and the general public. Each volunteer will receive a FREE River Sweep 2006 T-Shirt. 

Anyone who wants to make a difference in the quality of the Ohio River Valley can volunteer for River Sweep. It is an excellent opportunity for citizens to play an active role in improving the environment. 

How to Volunteer 

There is at least one designated cleanup location for each county bordering the Ohio River, plus additional sites along the tributaries. These areas are selected based on the amount of litter and accessibility to volunteers. Marinas and boat ramps make good cleanup locations. To find your local cleanup site, call ORSANCO’s toll-free River Sweep hotline:


Volunteers must sign a waiver of liability, and anyone under 18 years old must have written parental permission to participate. An on-site supervisor will be available. 

Safety Guidelines for River Sweep Volunteers 

 Watch where you walk and avoid broken glass, rusty nails and poison ivy.

 Never place yourself in a dangerous situation, such as trying to get trash that is floating in the river.

 The current can be very strong; so don’t get in the water.

 Avoid high cliffs.

 Watch for traffic when working in the pullover areas along side the road.

 Wear old comfortable clothing and shoes.

 Wear gloves to protect your hands from sharp objects like glass and metal.

 Avoid areas that are overgrown with shrubs.

 Trash bags are provided.



 After 140 years on Winchester Avenue, U.S. Repeating Arms Co. officially closed the doors to its New Haven, Conn., factory Wednesday. With the plant's closure, production of the iconic Winchester


Model 94 and Model 70 rifles and the Model 1300 shotgun will cease. City and state officials have been meeting with potential buyers of the plant, but, so far, no one has expressed an interest. There were reports that Smith & Wesson and Savage Arms toured the plant, but both companies said a purchase is not likely, the New Haven Register reports. Connecticut Gov. M. Jodi Rell vows to continue to fight for jobs at the plant. USRAC parent company Herstal Group of Belgium said in January it would close the factory to concentrate on growing its current line of other Winchester shotguns and rifles. Winchester guns had been manufactured in New Haven since 1866. During World War II, more than 19,000 people worked at the New Haven factory. Connecticut's News Channel 8 last week featured a look back at the history of the plant and the guns it produced.


Hunting & CCW Legislation 

The PA House of Representatives legislation that will provide gun owners who hunt and possess a Concealed Carry Permit to possess their self-defense firearm while hunting currently has 42 co-sponsors and is set to be heard by the legislature shortly.

This legislation (HB 2563) has been introduced at the request of the Allegheny County Sportsmen’s League, the PA Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs and the PA Sportsmen’s Association.

This legislation has been considered and voted out of committee, Game and Fish, and is projected to be brought to the floor of the House shortly.


New Website Helps Residents Learn if They Need Mine Subsidence Insurance  

Property owners will be able to quickly check a new website to see whether their property is above or near an abandoned mine, and if it is they can get information instantly on how they can protect their property with mine subsidence insurance.

Coal has been mined underground in Pennsylvania for more than 200 years and the workings extend throughout 43 of the state’s 67 counties. More than 1 million homes in Pennsylvania sit atop abandoned mines.

Mine Subsidence Insurance is a nonprofit fund administered by the Coal and Clay Mine Subsidence Insurance Board and the Department of Environmental Protection that pays claims if property is damaged by mine subsidence.

The insurance premium is about $1 for every $1,000 of coverage up to $250,000. Coverage is available to both residential and commercial buildings and there is a senior citizen discount for those older than 65.

Since the mine subsidence insurance program was created in 1961, it has paid more than $20 million in claim repairs.

The website enables residents to view maps of municipalities in Allegheny, Butler, Blair, Cambria, Clarion, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Washington and Westmoreland counties where mine subsidence problems are more frequent.

Residents in unlisted municipalities or other counties can complete an online, site-specific request form for the same information, or they can call the MSI help desk at 1-800-922-1678 to find out if their property is at risk. The help desk is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Mine subsidence insurance is also available through some homeowners’ insurance agents.

For more information, visit the Mine Subsidence Insurance Program website

Source: PA Environment Digest







 New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton quietly became a co-sponsor of a bill aimed at making traced gun data public, reports the New York Post. Clinton signed on to the bill last week after New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez had already formally filed it, and she never announced her support of it in a press release. Clinton has been a strong advocate of gun control, but has been somewhat silent on the issue recently. Last year, Clinton opposed the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects firearms industry companies from frivolous lawsuits.



 Dr. Gary Alt, former Pennsylvania Game Commission Deer Project Leader, will deliver the keynote address at the Quality Deer Management Association’s annual National Convention and Whitetail Expo, to be held at the Valley Forge Convention Center in King of Prussia, Pa., from June 22-25. Alt, the noted deer and bear biologist, was at the center of controversy in Pennsylvania when he helped initiate sweeping changes in the Game Commission’s deer management program. In addition to his Friday evening, June 22, speech, Alt will conduct an educational seminar the next day at the deer conservation and management association’s sixth annual gathering.



 Rep. Bobby Jindal (R.-La.) has introduced legislation to amend federal emergency statute laws that would prevent local authorities from confiscating lawfully owned firearms during times of disaster. “Particularly during emergencies like those surrounding Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, when incidences of looting, violence and lawlessness were broadcast around the country, we must ensure that law-abiding gun owners are not deprived of their constitutionally protected right to bear arms,” Rep. Jindal said. Thirty-three states have “emergency powers” laws that give the government permission to suspend or limit gun sales and to prohibit or restrict citizens from transporting or carrying firearms. In some states, authorities can seize guns outright from citizens who have committed no crime.



Pol Wants Cops to `Wound'

From the "Maim Them, Don't Kill Them" file comes a gem that could only originate in New York State, where a liberal state senator is pushing legislation that would require Empire State police officers to shoot only to wound criminals, not kill them.

State Sen. David A. Paterson (D-Harlem) has proposed this statute before, but his press secretary, Jim Plastiras, told Gun Week that, because the Republicans control the legislature, this bill has never before made it out of committee. New York cops evidently could not be happier, according to The New York Daily News.

That newspaper quoted John Grebert, director of the New York State Association of Chiefs of Police, who stated, "This bill shows absolutely no understanding of just how difficult it is for a police officer when they get into situations requiring the use of deadly force."

"Winging" criminal suspects typically only happens on television or theater screens. In real life, police are taught to shoot for the center of mass when they have to employ lethal force.

Paterson was supposed to be meeting with police officials to discuss his proposal, Plastiras said.

The New GUN WEEK, March 20, 2006


CCW Hunting & CCW Legislation 

The PA House of Representatives legislation that will provide gun owners who hunt and possess a Concealed Carry Permit to possess their self-defense firearm while hunting currently has 42 co-sponsors and is set to be heard by the legislature shortly.

This legislation (HB 2563) has been introduced at the request of the Allegheny County Sportsmen’s League, the PA Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs and the PA Sportsmen’s Association.

This issue was an integral part of the March 14th news conference.


Pro-Gun News Conference in Harrisburg on March 14th 

Gun Owners and Sportsmen and Women converged on Harrisburg in a once in a decade opportunity to strike a blow for their rights by attending our News Conference in Harrisburg in support of Rep. Metcalf and Senator Pippy who introduced legislation to end the illegal registration of Firearms Owners.

Gun Owners of America Executive Director, Larry Pratt joined with pro-gun grassroots groups in speaking out in support of ending gun registration and the hypocrisy of gun control.

Legislation introduced as a result of our efforts and attendance in Harrisburg are as follows:

HB 2536/SB 1156 Registration of Guns Prohibition

HB 2563 Extending CCW Rights to Hunters

HB 1181 Extending CCW Rights to State Employees

More legislation is currently being drafted in recognition of gun owners and sportsmen and women.


2006/02/23 Look Out, Here Comes Al

Like a completely refurbished "pre-owned vehicle," Al Gore seems to be positioning himself to Hillary Clinton's left and as greener than John Kerry for a run at the 2008 Democratic nomination for president. His slogan might well read "reelect Al Gore."



2006/02/27 Justice Scalia Champions Hunting

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia fondly remembers carrying a rifle around New York City as a boy and says outdoorsmen should attack the idea that guns are only used for crimes.


2006/03/01 Agents Erred At Gun Shows, Official Says

Federal agents made mistakes while searching for illegal firearm sales at Richmond gun shows, a top federal law enforcement officer told congressional investigators February 28. But the official also defended aggressive gun-show patrols conducted by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.



2006/02/28 Liberal Road Rage

"Ironically," writes John Lott, commenting on a study on road rage and gun ownership, "the researchers` regression results also show that liberals are much more likely to engage in road rage (both making obscene gestures and driving aggressively) than conservatives, and that the difference is larger than the difference for whether one had carried a gun in the car at least once. This variable is apparently never investigated, but presumably the researchers are also concerned about liberals being allowed to drive cars."


Damage Claim

Don't ship a firearm through Federal Express (FedEx), because if it is damaged, you may not receive a full settlement, and in the process, company policy may put you in conflict with federal gun law.

That's the message that Arizona-based gunwriter Robert Boatman is spreading to fellow writers and anyone else he has a chance to tell his woeful story to, and it is quite a story.

This past December, Boatman sold a rifle to a Florida resident; so when he had the gun shipped to a federally-licensed firearms dealer in Florida, it went into transit via FedEx. Boatman placed a $500 value on the rifle for insurance purposes.

When the rifle arrived at the dealer's shop, it had suffered a broken stock. At that point, Boatman filed a claim with FedEx for $450, which was less than the full amount.

That's when Boatman and the firearms licensee in Florida learned of FedEx's oddball policy about reimbursement for firearms damage. In a letter to the company, a copy of which Boatman supplied to Gun Week, he noted that "Two FedEx employees visited (the) gun dealer, looked at (the) broken rifle, announced that company policy did not allow them to make an on-site adjustment, and asked the dealer to hand over the gun to them so they could take it back to their offices. The dealer, of course, refused."

Pressure Applied Making matters worse, Boatman said, the same two FedEx employees came back to the Florida gun shop later the same day and "pressured" him to give up the rifle, and he again refused.

It is a federal felony for a licensed firearms dealer to release a firearm to FedEx or anyone else who does not have a firearms license, which FedEx does not. Boatman checked with the Miami office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to determine whether federal statute or regulations had changed, and he was assured by three different agents in Miami that the rules are still in place.

"The BATFE further assured me that any FFL dealer who hands a firearm over to anyone other than a qualified buyer who has passed a background check or (is) a current holder of a Federal Firearms License who is standing there with his license in his hand is liable for prosecution on various felony counts, loss of his license and his business."

Because the dealer refused to let the FedEx employees walk out of his business with the broken rifle, Boatman's insurance claim was rejected.

However, FedEx spokeswoman Allison Sobczak told Gun Week that the company does have the right to inspect a damaged shipment, and that, based on what their attorneys tell them, the company is "acting within the guidelines of federal law" by asking to take the gun for inspection. She added, though, that if they are mistaken, they will "look at" the policy and make a change so that everything is done within the guidelines of the law. Meanwhile, Sobczak said she had tried to contact Boatman, and would continue trying to reach him to discuss the issue further.

Adding further mystery to the affair, Boatman's original claim, which was adjusted to include freight shipping charges, was $478.35, but when the claim was denied, the value had been reduced to $178.35. Boatman supplied Gun Week with documents supporting his story. Presumably, when he and Sobczak finally chat, that issue will be resolved.

Boatman's frustration was compounded by the fact that FedEx has what amounts to a labyrinth of automated services that does not enable someone to speak directly to a live human. Boatman told Gun Week that he never was able to find a telephone number to reach the one person from whom he did receive a letter denying his claim because "the original shipping carton, packaging materials and contents were not available for our inspection, as required by the FedEx Service Guide. Since the shipment was not available for inspection, we cannot determine if any negligence occurred."

Gun Week found itself in the same position, trying to navigate a maze of websites and links until we did get a person on the telephone at a Tennessee FedEx facility, who forwarded our call to Pittsburgh, PA.

Boatman had detailed the saga in a letter to T. Michael Glenn at FedEx in Memphis. The New GUN WEEK, March 10, 2006


Big Win For Gun Owners' Privacy

The growing revolt by Pennsylvania gun owners and sportsmen against handing over their Social Security numbers continues as on Monday (2/27/06), a federal district judge agreed with Mike Stollenwerk’s argument that such requirements violate the federal Privacy Act.

Judge Juan R. Sanchez’s ruling struck down Pennsylvania’s law that controls the sales of guns in the state and who may carry them.

“I feel great. I think we’re benefiting all citizens in Pennsylvania when it comes to privacy of their Social Security numbers,” Stollenwerk said this morning from Washington, D.C., where he is a law student at Georgetown University.

Stollenwerk emphasized that “this was a privacy case, not a gun case. And, of course, state governments can continue to regulate the purchase, transfer and license the carrying of guns if they want to. They just have to follow federal Social Security number privacy laws when carrying out such schemes.”

Noting the increasing risk of identity theft, Stollenwerk said the case “is about privacy in the information age.”

The federal gun check law does not require it, saying the information is optional, they say. But, for some reason, Pennsylvania officials chose to require Social Security numbers when they set up their own background-check system.

Stollenwerk thinks Pennsylvania residents may be giving out their Social Security numbers against their will in other cases.

“To me, this is really a big issue in Pennsylvania,” he says. “It’s almost inane that the government needs your Social Security number every time you turn around or go to the bathroom. I’m thinking this case will move us along.”



National Carry Bill Introduced

US Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL) recently introduced HR-4547, a national right-to-carry reciprocity bill that would provide national reciprocity for state carry licensees.

The bill would allow any person with a valid carry permit or license issued by a state to carry a concealed firearm in any other state if they meet certain criteria. The bill would not create a federal licensing system; it would simply require the states to recognize each other's carry permits, just as they recognize drivers' licenses.  The New GUN WEEK, March 10, 2006


*2006/03/01 Survey: Women OK With Hunting

"Why not get moms, sisters, wives, daughters and girlfriends into activities that for far too long were the exclusive dominion of men? Shame on us for being so selfish," writes Gene Mueller.


2006/03/02 Nagin, New Orleans Still Violate Gun Rights

The National Rifle Association has filed a motion in federal court to have both New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin and Police Superintendent Warren Riley held in contempt, stemming from the continued failure of Nagin and Riley to comply with a federal injunction issued last September to halt illegal gun confiscations following Hurricane Katrina and return all seized firearms to their owners.


2006/03/02 Gun Registry Cost May Soar Past $2B

A pending report by Canada's auditor general is expected to peg the price tag on the national gun registry program at well over $2 billion, says a spokesman for a government MP.


Senator Santorum Introduces the Sportsmen’s Privacy Protection Act 

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA), Chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, introduced S. 2249, the Sportsmen's Privacy Protection Act, which would repeal the federal mandate that requires states to collect Social Security numbers for recreational licenses.   

“I have heard from a lot of hunters and sportsmen’s groups about their legitimate concerns in giving their Social Security number when applying for a hunting license because the numbers are rarely protected as they should be,” said Senator Santorum.  “In Pennsylvania and many other states, recreational licenses remain in a paper book often with multiple entries on a page.  In my view, there are significant privacy concerns to disclosing Social Security numbers when outdoor enthusiasts purchase their hunting, fishing or recreational licenses.” 

“This important legislation restores the privacy rights of recreational hunters and fishermen, while maintaining an effective system of child support enforcement,” said Senator Santorum.  “I urge my colleagues to consider cosponsoring this legislation that restores the privacy rights of recreational hunters and fishermen.” 


Take Time to Checkout How You Can Save on Home/Business Heating Costs

With Fall here and winter’s colder weather not far behind, now is the time to think about what you can do to reduce the cost of heating and energy use in your home or business.

And if you need more incentive, federal and state utility agencies are also telling us this winter’s heating fuel costs (heating oil and natural gas) may be as much as one-third higher than last year.


Here are a sampling of tools and tips you can use to identify your heating and energy use costs and then do something to reduce them. Also included is a link to the LIHEAP Program that helps low-income residents pay energy bills.

If you have tips, resources and ideas for reducing heating costs that you’d like to pass along to others, just send them to: and we’ll spread them to others!

· EnergyStar Home Energy/Heating Management Tools

· EnergyStar Business Energy Management Tools

· Pennsylvania Resources Council Energy Conservation Tips

· Home Heating Cost Reduction Tips From DEP

· Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission Tips to Reduce High Natural Gas Costs

· PUC Home Heating Safety Tips

· Low-Income Energy Assistance Program to Help Pay Heating Bills

· Energy Buying Cooperatives –

Philadelphia Energy Cooperative (Do you know of others?)

NewsClip: Oil Dealers ヨ Conservation Key to Saving this Winter

Source: PA Environment Digest 


Gun owners to rally in Harrisburg

 on March 14th 

Plans are progressing swiftly for gun owners to descend on Harrisburg in support of Rep. Metcalf and Senator Pippy who are introducing landmark legislation to end the illegal registration of Firearms Owners. 

Speakers are being lined up to address the many issues remaining of consequence to Pennsylvania gun owners such as ending the duty to retreat law, ending the ban on carrying a concealed firearm in state parks, etc. For too long Pennsylvania gun owners have tolerated the introduction of and deliberation on so-called reasonable gun control measures that place us all risk.

This is a perfect opportunity for all gun owners and sportsmen and women who feel that the legislature has not heard the concerns to make their voices heard. A good turnout of gun owners and sportsmen at this event will be of immeasurable benefit for years to come.  Buses are being arranged that will leave from the Pittsburgh area the morning of the rally and return the evening of the same day.  Cost will be approximately $30 per person that covers the trip and refreshments.  For More Information and/or Travel Arrangements (Buses ARE being arranged for this day-@$30) contact Kim Stolfer, FOAC/ACSL, by phone at (412) 221-3346, or by E-Mail at




"Why Gun Bans Don't Workナand What to Do" is an excellent article by Dr. James Swann, posted on ESPN Outdoors Web site, that provides facts and suggestions for becoming pro-active in the gun debate. "The End of Hunting," by Christina Larsen, appearing in the Washington Monthly, clearly spells out how important creating access is for the hunting heritage to survive. "Hunting for Reasons More Elusive Every Year," in the Oregonian, mourns declining hunter numbers and asks, if not hunters, then who will pay the costs of preserving habitat and managing fish and wildlife.




The anarchy that was predicted by anti-gun interests in 1996 when the Texas Concealed Gun Law took effect has been disproved in practice, and the facts presented in an "Opinion" article by State Sen. Jerry Patterson demonstrate quite clearly why Texans are safer now than they were before the law was enacted. 


PETA Protest Draws Counter Protesters in DC

It may be a while before People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) attempts another publicity stunt in front of the US Department of Agriculture’s Washington, DC, headquarters.

Their last one, Nov. 9, flubbed when counter-demonstrators from the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) descended on the scene to reveal PETA’s record of euthanizing dogs and cats. While PETA protested the consumption of poultry with demonstrators in chicken and turkey costumes, according to Associated Press, the CCF demonstrators showed up with a protester dressed as a dog, and another faking an injection from a large bogus syringe.

Both demonstrations had coffins as props.

The CCF group carried signs that read “PETA Kills Animals.” They also handed out literature detailing the arrest of two PETA employees this past summer after the carcasses of dead house pets were left in a garbage dumpster in North Carolina.

According to the report, David Martosko, CCF director of research, said his group’s use of the prop coffin was a way to expose to the public that “PETA ought to use those coffins to give proper burial to the thousands of animals they’ve actually killed.”

Since 1998, according to the report, records indicate that PETA has killed thousands of cats and dogs, and over the past two years, has killed more than 85% of the animals it took into its shelters.

Source: The New GUN WEEK, December 10, 2005 


CANADIANS BLAME JUDGES FOR GUN VIOLENCE . . . Following the Dec. 26 shooting of a 15-year-old girl, Toronto residents overwhelmingly indicated that lax judges are a “major factor” spurring gun violence. One of the suspects charged in that killing of Jane Creba in a shooting that wounded six other people was out on parole at the time of the incident. Some 76 percent of respondents to the Ipsos Reid survey, conducted on behalf of the National Post and Global News, believe that lenient judges are allowing gun crime to flourish in Canada’s cities. “People are really wondering what these judges are doing,” said Darrel Bricker, president of Ipsos Reid. “They’re [the respondents] are about getting tough on crime and increasing sentences.”


CRIMINALS KILL, NOT GUNS . . . Though Boston’s mayor was quick to blame guns for his city’s violent crime problem, New Hampshire’s Union-Leader pointed out last week that a rise in the city's murder rate can be attributed to more criminals in the city. “Last year Boston Mayor Tom Menino blamed an influx of guns from northern New England for the city's spiking murder rate. But an analysis by The Boston Globe last week found a more plausible culprit. A rise in young men. Typically, cities that see large increases in their population of young males also see large increases in crime. Boston was no exception,” the Union-Leader explained. “If Boston officials don't want a repeat of 2005, they'd do well to turn their resources toward finding and locking up gang members and drug dealers rather than changing gun laws in New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont.”


HB 1717, Citizen’s Rights & the Law

            Domestic Violence is one of the most talked about issues in today’s media.  This is because virtually every group that is involved with societal issues is sooner or later drawn into this web of conflicting emotions, data, and beliefs.  Politics then becomes mired down by the contrast in desires to “do what is right” or “how can we make this work for us”.

It is important that we understand that PA was the “first” state in the nation with a comprehensive domestic violence law and agenda beginning in the middle seventies (much like PA being the first state, beginning in 1934, with a comprehensive Uniform Firearms Act/set of laws).

Anyone who has had “any” dealing with the actual issues in the domestic violence enforcement issues in PA is well aware of how and where the system is abused and how it abuses the average individual.  Virtually no tangible benefit could be claimed by anyone as to the worth of the old law except by how much injustice was imparted to, in most cases, men and how it actually failed women in need.

            It was important to set the stage by the above so you would know that there has been deeply discordant voices rumbling for years about the abuses by the courts of the falsely accused from many directions and the inability of the courts to take effective action to protect those in need (not that the government actually has a responsibility here though).  Enter (former) Rep. Melissa Weber, Republican, in 2003 and her bill HB 2403.  This “horrible” legislation was the brainchild of the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PCADV).

Remember this group's name well as they are permeated with anti-gun individuals!

            The gist of this legislation is that the legislature was oblivious, as was the NRA, to the deep consequences to gun owners of this legislation.  Like the pay grab, the Governor and House leadership tried to run this bill in late 2004 but much to the surprise of everyone in the legislature, PCADV and the media, grassroots PA gun groups, without ANY help from the NRA, joined together to educate legislators and blocked this legislation.  Despite all the forces arrayed against us we fought this bill to a standstill.  FOAC also helped to inform the gun owners in Rep. Melissa Weber's district during the run up to the 2004 General Election as to her troubling effort on this legislation AND her unwillingness to communicate with us so that our concerns could be addressed.  She lost her reelection bid by just fewer than 500 votes.

            This carried us into the new session (2005/2006) with the continuing drumbeat of the PCADV on this issue.  The difference is that NOW we had the attention of House leadership and thus commenced a prolonged effort of nearly 8 months of almost daily give and take on virtually every section of what now has become HB 1717.  We faced a climate in Harrisburg that forecast certain passage of some kind of domestic violence bill in this session (2005/2006).  Behind the scenes, the ACSL worked with Harry Schneider of the PSA, attorney Mike McCormick and House leadership to craft the very best language possible considering the forces arrayed against gun owners.  Who were they, for starters the PCADV then Ed Rendell, the Philadelphia Caucus, Philadelphia DA Lynn Abrams to name a few.

It is important to make clear that the GREATEST problem in our experience and knowledge of this issue, domestic violence, is the standard of evidence (Preponderance of the Evidence) for the issuance of a PFA.  It is FAR too low and is actually the lowest standard available in the justice system.

There are many good measures in HB 1717 such as a first for ANY state in this nation that an unjustly accused individual now can sue civilly for false accusations AND perjury charges can be instituted against manipulative spouses.  Also you have a choice of where your firearms are held by including 3rd party choices in their storage.  There are many more important changes that we were able to negotiate.  But . . . .

             Problems with this issue remain the “low standard of evidence” AND the increase in the term of the PFA from the current 18 months to three years as well as several other substantial issues.  I want to make it extremely clear that we “FOUGHT” tooth and nail to change these points but were unsuccessful THIS time!  It is also EXTREMELY important to point out that gun owners had three tremendous champions in the House with us in this fight and they were Rep. Daryl Metcalfe, Rep. Teresa Forcier and Rep. Russ Fairchild.

In light of this the grassroots gun groups of PA, after examining the final language and all of our options, chose “not to support OR oppose this legislation” like we did with our opposition to HB 2403.  HB 2403 was much worse and would have quickly become law in 2004 if we had not made a major effort to derail it.  We gutted most, but not all, of the adverse language in what became HB 1717.  The PSA and ACSL did not oppose HB 1717 (and FOAC will ‘not’ use this legislation in grading incumbents) because the gains outweighed the negatives, but the PSA and ACSL did not support it because it contained some bad features and did not go far enough to correct the harms in existing law.  Representative Metcalfe’s & Forcier’s co-sponsorship also made sure that the no additional adverse changes were made without their/our knowledge, which was tried in the Senate at the behest of Gov. Rendell the first time Senate passage was attempted.   Were the gains worth it?

Only time will tell!  Like other issues, it is pure conjecture as to what “would have happened” to this legislation IF we had not intervened, for surely HB 2403 would have become law in 2004 and PFA law would be much worse and we would have none of the gains made in HB1717.   

            In retrospect, we have all seen what can be accomplished with citizen involvement.  Motorcyclist groups worked for two + decades for the successful repeal of the mandatory helmet law.  Citizen outrage forced the retreat on the pay raise and sent liberal anti-gun judge Nigro into early retirement.  IF 10% of the PA gun owners would give us a few hours of their time we could change the remaining problems in the domestic violence law by the end of the year.  The NRA was complicit in helping advance HB 2403 but, to their credit, was able to contribute, in a small way, to the negotiations over HB 1717.

It is, and will remain, our fervent desire to see the gun owners of PA awaken to the true extent of their collective political power and flex atrophied muscles to the point that we drive the debate on gun control where it needs to go.



Problems in Firearms Forensics

TYRONE JONES is serving a life sentence, in part because of a microscopic particle that Baltimore police found on his left hand. At his trial for murder in 1998 the crime-lab examiner gave evidence that the particle was residue from a gunshot. He claimed Jones must have held or fired a gun shortly before his arrest.

Jones denies this and still protests his innocence. His defence team is appealing the conviction, claiming that the science of gunshot residue (GSR) analysis is not as robust as the prosecution claims.

Now, a New Scientist investigation has found that someone who has never fired a gun could be contaminated by someone who has, and that different criminal investigators use contradictory standards. What's more, particles that are supposedly unique to GSR can be produced in other ways.

Forensic scientists often testify that finding certain particle types means the suspect handled or fired a weapon. Janine Arvizu, an independent lab auditor based in New Mexico, reviewed the Baltimore city police department's procedures relating to GSR. Her report concludes: “The BCPD lab routinely reported that gunshot residue collected from a subject's hands 'most probably' arose from proximity to a discharging firearm, despite the fact that comparable levels of gunshot residue were detected in the laboratory's contamination studies.” The BCPD did not return calls requesting comment.

Some specialists argue for a more cautious approach. “None of what we do can establish if anybody discharged a firearm,” says Ronald Singer, former president of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and chief criminalist at the Tarrant county medical examiner's office in Fort Worth, Texas.

Peter De Forest of John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York goes further. “I don't think it's a very valuable technique to begin with. It's great chemistry. It's great microscopy. The question is, how did [the particle] get there?”

GSR analysis is commonly used by forensic scientists around the world. In Baltimore alone, it has been used in almost 1000 cases over the past decade. It is based on identifying combinations of heavy metals in microscopic particles that are formed when the primer in a cartridge ignites. The primer sets off the main charge, which expels the bullet.

There is no standardised procedure to test for GSR, but the organisation ASTM International, which develops standards that laboratories can look to for guidance, has developed a guide for performing the technique that was approved in 2001. This states that particles made only of lead, barium and antimony, or of antimony and barium are “unique” to gunshot residue. The particles are identified using a scanning electron microscope and their composition analysed using energy-dispersive spectrometry.

But recent studies have shown that a non-shooter can become contaminated without going near a firearm. Lubor Fojtásek and Tomás Kmjec at the Institute of Criminalistics in Prague, Czech Republic, fired test shots in a closed room and attempted to recover particles 2 metres away from the shooter. They detected “unique” particles up to 8 minutes after a shot was fired, suggesting that someone entering the scene after a shooting could have more particles on them than a shooter who runs away immediately (Forensic Science International, vol 153, p 132).

A separate study reported in 2000 by Debra Kowal and Steven Dowell at the Los Angeles county coroner's department reported that it was also possible to be contaminated by police vehicles. Of 50 samples from the back seats of patrol cars, they found 45 contained particles “consistent” with GSR and four had “highly specific” GSR particles. What's more, they showed that “highly specific” particles could be transferred from the hands of someone who had fired a gun to someone who had not. This doesn't surprise Arvizu. “If I was going to go out and look for gunshot residue, police stations are the places I'd look,” she says.

“Someone entering a crime scene after a shooting could have more particles on them than a shooter who runs away immediately”

Scientists using the technique are aware of the potential contamination problem, but how they deal with it varies. In Baltimore, for example, the city police department's crime lab protocol calls for at least one lead-barium-antimony particle and a few “consistent” particles to be found to call the sample positive for GSR. The FBI is more cautious. Its protocol states: “Because the possibility of secondary transfer exists, at least three unique particles must be order to report the subject/object/surface 'as having been in an environment of gunshot primer residue'.” So a person could be named as a potential shooter in Baltimore, but given the benefit of the doubt by the FBI.

Even worse, it is possible to pick up a so-called “unique” particle from an entirely different source. Industrial tools and fireworks are both capable of producing particles with a similar composition to GSR. And several studies have suggested that car mechanics are particularly at risk of being falsely accused, because some brake linings contain heavy metals and can form GSR-like particles at the temperatures reached during braking.

In one recent study, Bruno Cardinetti and colleagues at the Scientific Investigation Unit of the Carabinieri (the Italian police force) in Rome found that composition alone was not enough to tell true GSR particles from particles formed in brake linings (Forensic Science International, vol 143, p 1)

At an FBI symposium last June, GSR experts discussed ways to improve and standardise the tests. The bureau would not discuss the meeting, but special agent Ann Todd says the FBI's laboratory is preparing a paper for publication that “will make recommendations to the scientific community regarding accepting, conducting and interpreting GSR exams”.

Singer maintains that the technique is useful if used carefully. “I think it's important as part of the investigative phase,” he says, though not necessarily to be


presented in court. But he adds: “There are people who are going to be a bit more, shall we say, enthusiastic. That's where you're going to run into trouble.”

From issue 2527 of New Scientist magazine, 23 November 2005



Retaining Access

Jim Posewitz with Orion-The Hunter’s Institute, a Montana-based organization, told Gun Week, “The disposal of public lands, we’re not in favor of, particularly when one can basically buy it without proving that you’re going to mine it. It can become ski runs or anything else inside the public estate.

“Our interest as a hunter advocacy organization,” he added, “is that we see the retention of public lands as a primary issue.”

He said if the legislation passes with the mining provision intact, it could create “inholdings” on public land; private parcels spotted throughout a national forest, for example.

Posewitz acknowledged that he is somewhat torn on the issue, because as a westerner, he respects private property rights.

“But as an organization,” he said, “we have to see that those lands remain public.”

He said the legislation “snuck up on people.”

Source: The New GUN WEEK, December 10, 2005




Grouse Partnership

Her remarks were supported by James Mosher with the North American Grouse Partnership, an organization that is separate from the Ruffed Grouse Society.

“This is an effort that has been on-going for quite a number of years,” he lamented about the alleged land turn-over. “It has always been the position of the conservation community to oppose the privatization of public lands, at least without fair exchange of resource value, at least acre-for-acre.”

Mosher ,said his group’s interest is in prairie grouse, because habitat for grouse on America’s prairies is disappearing. He also said his organization would never support any kind of exchange that would limit sportsman access or result in loss of hunting opportunity.

In their letter to Congress, the conservation groups contended, “Public lands are managed in trust for all of the people of the United States by federal agencies such as the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Public lands contain well more than 50% of the nation’s blue-ribbon trout streams and are strongholds for imperiled trout and salmon in the western United States. More than 80% of the most critical habitat for elk is found on lands managed by the Forest Service and the BLM, alone. Antelope, sage grouse, mule deer, salmon and steelhead, and countless other fish and wildlife species, as well as the nation’s hunters and anglers, are similarly dependent on public lands.

“As more private lands are subdivided or posted,” the letter continues, “public lands provide the last access for sportsmen who wish to fish, hunt, and camp with their families and friends. That access could be compromised as a result of the Mining sections of the House Reconciliation Bill.”

The letter was signed by NWF, the Grouse organization, plus the Wildlife Management Institute, Trout Unlimited, Berkley Conservation Institute, Orion-the Hunter’s Institute, Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, Campfire Club of America, and the National Wildlife Refuge Association.

Source: The New GUN WEEK, December 10, 2005


Some Outdoors Groups Furious Over Section of Public Lands Bill

by Dave Workman Senior Editor

A section of legislation passed by the House of Representatives in the early hours of Nov. 18 while most Americans slept has infuriated some outdoors groups, including hunting and fishing organizations, who claim that it will turn over millions of acres of public lands to mining and other development, at the expense of hunters and anglers.

Calling this legislation “one of the biggest land grabs in history,” the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) issued an alert and sent a letter to Congress, signed by several other organizations, in hopes of derailing the questionable section. The New GUN WEEK, December 10, 2005

At issue are mining provisions in the House Reconciliation bill, HR-4241, which passed out of the house by a 217-215 vote. In an alert to outdoors groups, NWF’s Aislinn Maestas warned, “This could close as many as 270 million acres of land to hunting, angling and other outdoor recreation. At the same time, it would open these public lands to development, resulting in fragmentation and habitat loss.”

Maestas told Gun Week that it is now up to the US Senate to take the mining provisions out of the legislation. She believed the earliest anything might happen is the first week of December. The issue just might “drag into the winter months,” however.

She said adding the mining provision is “egregious” and “outrageous.”

“The American public deserves to have public lands passed on to our children and grandchildren,” she said.

Source:The New GUN WEEK, December 10, 2005


Pennsylvania Lawmaker Wants Armed Citizens to Have Options

by Dave Workman Senior Editor

A Republican state representative in Pennsylvania wants citizens in the Keystone State to have more options when facing criminal attack, and he has proposed legislation that will reform the state’s self-defense law.

State Rep. Steve Cappelli of Williamsport in Lycoming County told WNEP in Scranton that his bill would ease state gun laws and create a “stand your ground” principle in a state where one currently has to retreat before they can use lethal force in self-defense. Such statutes have come under fire in recent years because they allegedly leave law-abiding citizens vulnerable to criminal assault, and subject to prosecution if they defend themselves.

“We believe people who obey the law, whether they’re in their home, business or car have a right to defend themselves,” Cappelli said.

The law he proposes is similar to one passed earlier this year in Florida, amid wails from anti-gunners that it would give citizens carte blanche to shoot people they only think are attacking them. So far, that has not been the case. One other state, Washington, has a firmly-established “stand-your-ground” statute that has been affirmed twice in the past few years by that state’s Supreme Court. In addition, similar proposals have been filed in other states.

Cappelli said the law he is proposing “makes it clear that any law-abiding citizen, who has the right and who is legally licensed to own a weapon, to stand their ground and protect themselves, or others who are with them from that threat. It also provides them with much needed civil immunity from litigation that may occur after their use of force was used in self protection.”

In Washington state, there is a unique statute that actually provides for state reimbursement of court costs in the event a citizen who defends himself or herself from attack is prosecuted anyway, even after claiming self-defense this statute according to some observers, has discouraged “showcase” prosecutions of citizens who kill in self-defense.

Not everyone supports Cappelli’s legislation. WNEP quoted Elliott Weiss of Williamsport who called the proposal “a bad idea.”

“I think it would do more bad than good,” he said. “If Williamsport’s an example, look at the violence we’ve had. It would further increase it, more shootings, more killings, more harm.”

While Weiss’ remarks reflect the typical arguments against such laws, another Williamsport resident told the station, “I think it’s a good idea.”

“If somebody is going to try to hurt me,” said Ruth Hill, “my nephew, my kids, I’m going to fight to the death.”

Cappelli predicted to the station that his legislation will move through the legislature, but he would not predict whether anti-gun Gov. Ed Rendell would sign it.

Source: The New GUN WEEK, December 10, 2005





DATE: July 18, 2005

CONTACT: Mike Maranche


Allegheny County Sportsmen’s League

PHONE: (412) 714-0395

FAX: (412) 257-1099


Allegheny County Sportsmen’s League Selects Well Known

Political Activist – Kim Stolfer – to Chair Legislative Committee

The officers and delegates are proud to announce the appointment of Kim Stolfer to the position of Chairman of the ACSL Legislative Committee. ACSL President Mike Maranche stated "Kim Stolfer’s reputation and experience uniquely qualifies him for this important position especially in these troubled times". Maranche further stated, "the ACSL is committed to preserving our freedoms, protecting our constitutional heritage, and to community service, and an effective Legislative Chairman is essential to fulfilling our purpose and agenda".

"I am deeply honored by this appointment and will do everything in my power to ensure that the voice of the ACSL and its’ member clubs are heard by our representatives", Stolfer said. Further Stolfer says, "Effective communication and team work are the essential ingredients for community based grass-roots organizations, and I look forward to working with current Legislative Committee Vice-Chairman, Mike Christeson, as we move forward".

The position of Legislative Committee Chairman plays a key role in reviewing, analyzing and drafting legislation as well as researching issues and communicating with policy makers. As Chairman, Kim Stolfer will report directly to the ACSL President and Board of Directors on all matters relating to policy and legislation, and will be the official contact for the ACSL on these issues.

Kim Stolfer is the current Executive Director of Communications (former Chairman and co-founder) of Firearms Owners Against Crime, a statewide grassroots political action committee. He is a life member of the NRA, member of the PA Rifle & Pistol Association, the Cast Bullet Association, LEAA, American Society of Law Enforcement Trainers (ASLET), and graduate of Lethal Force Institute.

For more information on this appointment contact ACSL President Mike Maranche at (412) 714-0395 or

Kim Stolfer (Information Below).

CONTACT: Kim Stolfer

Chairman, Legislative Committee

Allegheny County Sportsmen’s League

PHONE: (412) 221-3346 Day after 4:00 PM

(412) 352-5018 Cell before 4:00 PM

FAX: (412) 257-1099


# # # End # # #



Gun Rights Champion Neal Knox Dies


Neal Knox, a champion of the firearm civil rights movement for more than 30 years, and the first editor of Gun Week when it began rolling off the presses in 1966, died Jan. 17 at his home in Virginia, ending a year-long battle with colon cancer. He was 69.

Read Gun Week's Tribute to Neal's life and accomplishments

Anyone who wishes to contribute to Neal's Memorial Fund see the Firearms Coalition's web site at


PA Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in ACSL Lawsuit against the Illegal Registry

On March 3, 2004 the Pennsylvania Supreme Court heard oral arguments in our lawsuit against the Governor and the Pennsylvania State Police.  The arguments took place in the Supreme Court Courtroom in the City County Building.  A reasonable amount of gun owners came into Pittsburgh to hear the arguments.

The arguments were to begin at 9:00 AM but the Justices did not enter the courtroom until 9:30 AM.  Only six of the seven Justices sat for the oral arguments.  This unexpected decision by Justice Saylor not to sit on this case is lending concern to the fact that the case could end in a tie.  A tie would result in us loosing the case.  Our Attorney began by immediately referring to the records being kept by the state police as a "registry of firearms owners" and that this registry is a violation of state law.  He stated that he believed that the lower court erred in ruling that the law only prohibited the state police from maintaining a complete registry, and that the information being retained by the State Police was only a partial registry. He attempted to convince the Justices that there was no authority in state  law granting the state police the authority to maintain the current information longer than 72 hours.  Mr. Pushinsky explained that while the state police only considered the information being retained a "sales database" and not a registry, it was clear that the information being entered into the database linked the firearms to the owners by recording their names, address and social security numbers, and is certainly a registry of firearm owners.

Justice Eakin questioned the ACSL’s attorney, asking that if the information on the application/record of sales sent to the state police were not intended to be entered into the database, then what was the purpose of sending in the information?  Our Attorney quipped that it is very difficult to explain what the Legislature intention is on any legislation.  This brought laughter from all of the Justices, and they agreed.  He then went on to respond that we know that the state police were required by law to report to the General Assembly each year the number of handguns and long gun sold.  That this provision appears to be the reason why the records are being sent. As with federal law, the records pertaining to the transaction are to be destroyed, with the federal government retaining them for only 24 hours, and the state 72 hours.  The ACSL’s attorney further explained that there is no statutory authority given to the state police to establish a database on persons who purchased a handgun. 

Justice Lamb asked the ACSL’s attorney a hypothetical question.  “If he purchased a handgun and gave that handgun to Justice Nigro, which he explained might be dangerous (which drew laughter from the courtroom) is that permitted under the law.  That ACSL's attorney explained that it was not permitted, and that both Justice Lamb and Nigro would have to transfer that firearms in the same manner on the premise of a dealer as though Justice Nigo intended on purchasing the firearm himself. 

After allowing about twenty minutes for our Attorney to argue our case, the government attorney rose to make her arguments. 

The State Police’s attorney told the court that the records they were keeping were a sales database and not a registry.  She alluded to the fact that this database was a law enforcement tools but explained to the court that the database did not contain all handguns.  She told the court that transfer between family member did not have to be transferred through a dealer and entered into their database.  That handguns that are brought into Pennsylvania by person moving into the state were not required to be entered into the database.  That any long gun sold in Pennsylvania did not have to be entered into the database.  She told the court that the records in that database were not complete, and as a result did not constitute a registry. 

The State Police’s attorney was questioned by the Justice Lamb that if he would give a handgun to Justice Nigro would that transfer have to be entered into the database and she explained that it would.

The court then questioned the State Police if there was statutory authority to establish the database and she explained that the authority was inferred. 

In finishing her arguments, the State Police Attorney, errored when she told the court that the bill enacting Act 17 came from the Rep. Robert Godshall.  The State Police attempted to prove this by quoting Rep. Robert Godshall from the floor debates on Act 17.  In a speech on the floor of the House Rep. Godshall claimed that Act 17 would not prevent the state police from continuing to maintain the records that they historically have been keeping.  She errored is saying that Godshall was the sponsor of the bill when truthfully the language that eventually became Act 17, and the language that was being considered in the House when Godshall made those comments, was drafted and sponsored by Sen. Robert Robbins.  Hopefully the clerks employed by the Justices will do a good job in researching the history of Act 17 and recognize that Rep. Godshall was not the sponsor of the bill, and the is comments were just his opinion. 


The case is finished and we must await a ruling by the court, which may take as long a 1 year.


PA Supreme Court Denies Gun Prohibitionist's Motion

As reported earlier the Brady Campaign, with support from the Pennsylvania State Police, submitted a motion to allow Attorneys form a powerful Washington D.C. law firm with ties to the former Clinton Administration, to give oral arguments. The motion asked that attorneys form Covington and Burling be permitted to split their time with the attorney from the Pennsylvania State Police.   On February 4, 2003 we received a copy of the order of the court that this motion was denied.

We are pleased that the court took this action.  This is an issue between Pennsylvanian's, and outside interference should not be permitted.


California's AG Lockyer Reluctantly Agrees: Ballistic Fingerprinting Technology Not Feasible

Initial California Attorney General Lockyer refused to agree with the initial California Department of Justice study that found Ballistic Fingerprinting not feasible as a law enforcement tool.  Lockyer then enlisted the help of renowned, independent forensic scientist and firearms examiner Dr. Jan De Kinder of the National Institute for Forensic Science in Belgium to analyze the technology.  According to a report in the Oakland Tribune "The technology doesn't yet exist to enable California to track the ballistic "fingerprints" of every firearm made and sold in the state, Attorney General Bill Lockyer said Wednesday in a report based on studies at the center of the national gun control debate. " Gun Week was the first to get an advanced copy of the Kinder report and wrote an opt-ed article.

The study was conducted after the California General Assembly passed ᅠAB 1717Requiring the Department of Justice to conduct the Study.

While word of the study's report was filtering down in the gun press, it was difficult to get copies of the Kinder report.  However, on January 29, 2003 Lockyer finally released the results of the study.  Even though a careful reading of the study seals the coffin on the concept of the use of Ballistic Fingerprinting, Lockyer, like the good anti-gunner that he is, was still holding out hope that the Federal Government can find a way to register all gun owners.

In spite of the overwhelming conclusive evidence presented in the California Studies, several Pennsylvania Legislators are determine to give the Pennsylvania State Police the authority to develop a Ballistic Fingerprinting database, and require the registration of all law-abiding gun owners.  Representative Lawrence H. Curry began circulating a memorandum on January 16, 2003 that he plans introduce legislation, introduced last year asHB 3010.  This legislation would require all handgun manufacturers to provide a shell casing in the box with all new handguns sold in Pennsylvania, and the casing are to be forwarded to the Pennsylvania State Police upon sale of the firearm.  Curry obviously never heard of the California Studies.  So the ACSL is going to provide access to the studies here so that gun owners can ask him to justify his legislation in light of this new evidence.

California Report: Feasibility of a California Ballistic Identification System

ATTACHEMENT A:  Technical Evaluation: Feasibility of a Ballistics Imaging Database For all New Handgun Sales.

ATTACHMENT B:  Ballistic Imaging and Comparison of Crime Gun Evidence by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, May 13, 2002 - Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.

ATTACHMENT C: Comments of Forensic Technology, Inc. on the Technical Evaluation: Feasibility of a Ballistics Imaging Database for All New Handgun Sales - Forensic Technology, Inc.

ATTACHMENT D: Review AB1717 report Technical Evaluation: Feasibility of a Ballistics Imaging Database for All New Handgun Sales.

For the Official California Site Containing the report while it lasts on the California web site see:

For Additional Information see the ACSL's report:  Ballistic Imaging.



Pennsylvania Supreme Court issues Order for Arguments

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has orderedoral arguments in the ACSL's appeal of the Commonwealth court decision in our suit against the PSP's registry of firearms owners.  The court ordered those arguments to take place in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on March 3, 2003 at 9:00 AM in the Supreme Court Courtroom in the City County Building on Grant Street. 

For copies of the ACSL's brief and Reply Brief to the Brady Campaign's Amici see our Gun Registrationweb page.

New Developments

Soon after the above correspondence reached our attorney's desk we received a copy of a motion filed by the Brady Campaign asking that two out of state lawyers be admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar.  The motion, called a Pro-Hac-Vice motion is filed by another attorney who is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar to ask the court to admit an out-of-state attorney(s) to the Pennsylvania Bar for the purpose of making oral arguments on a particular case the court is hearing.  That case, of course, is the ACSL's lawsuit against the State Police registry.

The attorney making the motion is Daniel R. Vine of the Brady Campaign.  He is making the motion on behalf of two attorneys from the law firm of Covington and Burling in Washington D.C., Mr. Christopher Sipes and Aaron Cooper (See ACSL's report The Road to the Supreme Court)

While the motion to admit to the Pennsylvania Bar will in all likelihood be granted, another motion must be filed to allow these attorneys to make oral arguments before the court and to share time with the State Police attorney. This motion may not be so easy, however, no one would be surprised if the court granted the motion.  The motion to ask the court to grant oral argument was supported by the Pennsylvania State Police.  This is Ed Rendell's new State Police Commissioner Jeffrey Miller.

These legal moves certainly show that the Brady campaign is pulling out all stops to insure that the state police registry is kept in place.  With the threat of the Brady Campaign making oral arguments it is very important that everyone who supports our position be in the court room on March 3, 2003.  If you are going to attend it is important that you dress appropriately and be in the courtroom before 9:00 AM.  No signs please!


The Legislative Session that almost was a victory for Gun Owners

The legislative session of the Pennsylvania General Assembly is over, and several victories for Pennsylvania gun owners were almost within our grasp.  Just one more day and we possibly would have obtained a number of positive reforms to the Uniform Firearms Act.  See the ACSL's Final Legislative Report.



eorgia Attorney General Announces Reciprocity Agreement with Pennsylvania

The ACSL has just received a copy of the Press Releasefrom the Attorney General of Georgia that an agreement has been reached with Attorney General Mike Fisher that will give reciprocity on License to carry between Pennsylvania and Georgia. We are awaiting final confirmation from Attorney General Fisher.


Allegheny County Gun Buyback Program Violates State and Federal Law.ᅠᅠ

The annual Pittsburgh Gun Buyback Program will begin in December.  According to information obtain by the ACSL they will be again violating state law.  As reported last year the ACSL obtained a report on an audit performed by the FBI on the Pennsylvania State Police regarding their administration of Pennsylvania Instant Check System.  This report made it clear Allegheny County Gun buyback Program is also illegal under the Federal Brady Law. 

The ACSL is attempting to bring this simple matter to the attention of the authorities and the general public by issuing a news release on November 28, 2002Unfortunately the illegal gun buyback is more politically correct, and is receiving more media attention. 

In 2001, in spite of the fact that all statistical evidence shows that Gun Buyback programs do nothing to reduce gun violence or accidents with firearms, the Pittsburgh Post Gazette in a November 30, 2001 editorial went so far as to claim that they play a roll in reducing gun accidents.  No one can ever accuse the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette to ever be confused by the facts.  They have for years totally ignored that  gun accidents have been falling.  A report issued by the National Institute for Health Statistics from 1981-1999, clearly shows that firearms accidents have been decreasing all across Pennsylvania, while firearm ownership in Allegheny county has steadily increased during that same period. Goods for Guns are proud of the fact that they have collected just over 7,100 firearms since 1994. The Pennsylvania State Police have reported that over 150,000 firearm were sold in Allegheny county during that same period.  The Post Gazette continues to play their role in the dummying down of America.

Breaking News !!

On May 3, 2002 the Allegheny County District Attorney's office to the ACSL's complaint.  Go to the DA's Response to learn what the Allegheny County District Attorneys office thinks of this program.  Then in June of 2002 we received a phone call from the DA's office again asking us to again file our complaint and we did.  As of this date we have received no response.

News Reports on the Buy Back

'Goods' intentions may dilute gun rights

Gun buyback program comes up far short


ACSL meets with Westmoreland County Sheriff on Concealed Carry

The ACSL's Legislative Committee Vice Chairman (Mr.) Kim Stolfer met with Westmoreland County Sheriff Chris Scherer to review the improvements being made to the in-office procedures, for CCW initial and renewal applications, which were instituted by the sheriff.  We were originally concerned about the CCW renewal procedures, but the sheriff had already begun improving the in-office procedures before we had contacted him.  The sheriff invited us to visit his office for a show and tell and to provide comments.  During the meeting the sheriff was impressed with the ACSL's knowledge of some of the finer points of the law.  That meeting was very successful .


State Representative Goes out of his way to slander the ACSL in Re-election Bid


Attorney General Mike Fisher Signs Reciprocity with Wyoming

On Wednesday September 11, 2002 Attorney General Mike Fisher signed his third reciprocity agreement with the state of WyomingAs of that date anyone person from Pennsylvania who is traveling in Wyoming, and has a valid Pennsylvania License to Carry, may do so provided they abide by the CCW laws in that state.

The ACSL received word that the Attorney General of Wyoming was interested in obtaining reciprocity from Pennsylvania, and had sent an agreement to Pennsylvania.  The ACSL then contacted Mike Fisher personally, and alerted him to the fact that the agreement was in his office.  He notified the ACSL that his office would perform a due diligent effort to have the agreement signed as soon as possible.  That was just one week ago.


ACSL & Lehigh Valley Firearms Coalition In the Supreme Court

Guess who we met on the way to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court? The Sarah Brady crowd has joined our lawsuit against Tom Ridge and the Pennsylvania State Police.  And, can you guess which side they are on? Read More

We have, from a reliable source, that the ACSL’s appeal of Commonwealth Court's decision on the PSP gun registry,  may be heard by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in Pittsburgh on September 11, 2002. We hope that any coincidence to now famous 9/11 is that the looser on that date will be the illegal registry.



The NRA Joins the Fight

We are pleased to announce that the NRA’s Firearms Civil Right Legal Defense Fund has agreed to the ACSL’s request to support our law suit monetarily.  While we are very grateful to those gun owners who have given to our legal defense fund, this effort by the ACSL has taxed our financial resources, and the NRA’s support is very much appreciated.


City of Pittsburgh Violates Law and Passes Gun Dealer Ordinance.  See Story


Tom Ridge Further Restricts Gun Owner Rights Before Leaving Office

Before leaving office to head the office of Home Lands Security Governor Tom Ridge notified each Administrative Department and placed then on notice that they must put into place a "Work Place Violence" policy.  Leading the pact on new "Work Place Violence Policy" was the Department of Environmental Protection. The ACSL met with Secretary Hess in Harrisburg about his proposed policy, which is to deny anyone, even those with a license to carry, to carry or possess a firearm on any DEP property.  Even after a presentation by Professor John Lott explaining that those with a license to carry present no danger, and after we explained that his proposal would violate the state constitution and the laws of the state of Pennsylvania, the Secretary nevertheless implemented the policy.  His policy was followed by a number of different agencies and departments implementing similar policies.  The ACSL has acquired a list of those department policies.  Click on PA Workplace Violence Policies so that you are aware just were to cannot carry a firearm in Pennsylvania.


ACSL Special Reports

ᅠ Game Lands Use Recommendations, and ACSL Special Report.




At the last regular meeting of the ACSL the delegates passed a resolution expressing the position of the ACSL on the proposed new orange regulations being proposed by the Pennsylvania Game Commission.


See Resolution for the text of the Resolution.


ACSL Alert

Harrisburg Lowers Blood Alcohol Levels for Firearms Ownership and Hunting

See the ACSL's alert for explanation on these changes


Handgun Ban in the Offering in Pennsylvania


Just days before real Americans were preparing to celebrate Independence Day, 13 Pennsylvania Legislators introduced Legislation to Ban  Handguns in violation of the very freedoms America was planning to celebrate.


Read how HB 1791 will lead to eventual handgun confiscation.



On August 1, 2003 Pennsylvania Attorney General Mike Fisher announced that his office has signed a reciprocity agreement with the state of North Carolina.  The effective date of the agreement should be August 14, 2003, the effective date of the North Carolina legislation.  This agreement came rapidly after North Carolina passed reciprocity on June 4, 2003 and it was signed by the Governor on June 14, 2003. 

The ACSL is very grateful to Attorney General Mike Fisher in following up on the passage of North Carolina's reciprocity statute, and his quick response to signing an agreement.  This now makes the sixth state by which Pennsylvania has reciprocity agreements.  See our Agreements page for information on the agreement and the laws relating to carrying a firearm in North Carolina.  August 1, 2003



When the Pennsylvania General Assembly returns to work in September one piece of legislation that may be waiting for them is a Constitutional Amendment to guarantee the right to hunt in Pennsylvania.

Before the Legislature adjourned for the summer State Representative Matthew Baker introduced HB 1512.  We certainly want to commend Rep. Baker for having the interest to introduce this bill, but the ACSL has take a close look at the bill, and we have some very positive and constructive suggestions.



Special Report

It has been reported that HB 2403 has been pulled from consideration at this time.





So far this year 70 bills have been introduced in the 108th Congress.  For a listing of those bills see the ACSL Report on the 108th Congress.



On September 25, 2003 the Chairman of the ACSL's Game Committee, Mike Maranche, traveled to Bradford Pa to testify on behalf of the Allegheny County Sportsmen's League on House Resolution 15, a bill to consider combining the Game Commission and the Fish and Boat Commission into one Wildlife Commission.  The ACSL had to travel to Bradford County because no hearing was to be schedule in the Southwestern part of the state. For a copy of Mr. Maranche's testimony click on TESTIMONY.



After talking with Attorney General Mike Fisher on Monday September 22, 2003 about obtaining reciprocity with Colorado, Delaware and Tennessee the ACSL has learned that an agreement has been reached where Tennessee will recognize a Pennsylvania CCW.  However this agreement does not permit a Tennessee resident to carry in Pennsylvania.  We will be working to understand the problems the Pennsylvania AG is having with reciprocity with these states. We are moving closer to have a clear legal path for Pennsylvanians to legally travel from Pennsylvania to Florida.



Senator Jane Orie and Rep. Daryl MetCalfe have introduced similar bills in the Pennsylvania General Assembly designed to reform Pennsylvania's reciprocity statute. Sen. Orie has introduced SB 941 in the Senate and Rep. Metcalfe has introduced HB 1973 in the House.

Success of this legislation will bring additional reciprocity agreement to Pennsylvania than under the current statues and all Pennsylvania CCW holds to travel in more states.


Read the reasons for Reciprocity Reform In Pennsylvania



According to a report by the Associated Press and published in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review a report by the CDC  finds no evidence that legislation has helped reduce firearm violence.  According the the CDC report they found no evidence that gun control laws, including waiting periods and bans on certain guns have reduced firearm violence.


Allegheny County Gun Buyback Program Still Violates State and Federal Law.ᅠᅠ

The annual Pittsburgh Gun Buyback Program will begin on Saturday, December 6.  According to information obtain by the ACSL they will be again violating state law.  As reported last year the ACSL has obtained a report on an audit performed by the FBI on the Pennsylvania State Police regarding their administration of Pennsylvania Instant Check System.  This report made it clear Allegheny County Gun buyback Program is also illegal under the Federal Brady Law. 

The ACSL is attempting to bring this simple matter to the attention of the authorities in Pittsburgh and Allegheny County and the general public by issuing a news release on December 3, 2003Unfortunately the illegal gun buyback is more politically correct, and is receiving more media is covering up the truth about this illegal activity. 

Just recently, see report below, the City of Pittsburgh partnered with the leadership of Goods for Guns to pass a resolution condemning the efforts in the Congress to protect the right of American citizen to purchase and own firearms and pass S695 protecting gun manufacturers from potentially bankrupting lawsuits.  It is clear that the City of Pittsburgh wants to punish lawful activity, then look the other way when illegal activity is going on right under their noses.

In 2001, in spite of the fact that all statistical evidence shows that Gun Buyback programs do nothing to reduce gun violence or accidents with firearms, the Pittsburgh Post Gazette in a November 30, 2001 editorial went so far as to claim that they play a roll in reducing gun accidents.  No one can ever accuse the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette of ever being confused by the facts.  They have for years totally ignored that  gun accidents have been falling.  A report issued by the National Institute for Health Statistics from 1981-1999, clearly shows that firearms accidents have been decreasing all across Pennsylvania long before Goods for Guns every came on the scene, while firearm ownership in Allegheny county has steadily increased during that same period. Goods for Guns are proud of the fact that they have collected just over 7,100 firearms since 1994. The Pennsylvania State Police have reported that over 150,000 firearm were sold in Allegheny county alone during that same period.  The Post Gazette continues to play their role in the media's effort of dummying down of America.

News Reports on the Buy Back

'Goods' intentions may dilute gun rights

Gun buyback program comes up far short


Road to the White House: Gun issue aids Bush among sportsmen

The ACSL quoted in news article from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. This balance news reporting is spreading.


Hoeffel speaks loudly for gun control

Philadelphia Inquirer quotes ACSL in a fairly balanced article.


The Brady Campaign is attempting to confuse the public in their News Release.  This decision did not determine whether the records being retained by the PSP are legal under federal law,   we were testing Pennsylvania law that prohibits the creation of a registry of firearm owners.  The federal question still needs to be decided.

The title of the Brady News Release was "PENNSYLVANIA SUPREME COURT BACKS POLICE: MAY KEEP GUN RECORDS TO SOLVE CRIMES"  quoted Michael Barnes that,  "Not surprisingly, Pennsylvania's highest court recognizes the importance of allowing law enforcement to fully investigate gun crimes. It's shocking that Senator Specter and President Bush have handcuffed our police by requiring the destruction of background check records and endangered them by putting assault weapons back on our streets," said Michael Barnes, President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence united with the Million Mom March.

What Barnes did not report from the decision was that the court agreed that, " The database does not maintain a record of all firearms owned by Pennsylvanians, which would include long guns, or firearms that are owned by Pennsylvanians, but not purchased in the Commonwealth. Additionally, the database of handgun sales does not include handguns that are transferred between spouses, parents and children, and grandparents and grandchildren. See 18 Pa.C.S. § 6111(c). Nor is the database a survey of existing ownership."

How the Brady Campaign can claim that such an incomplete and thus useless collection of data, as explained by the court, can be used to solve crimes is beyond comprehension.  Nowhere has anyone shown that the database maintained has been useful in solving crimes when almost all criminals acquire their firearms by unlawful means.

While the Brady Campaign's candidate for President, John Kerry, is out hunting and accepting guns he would not allow the average citizen to own, they make it clear why they want Sen. Kerry to be President --Gun Registration.


PA Supreme Court Allow State Police to keep Database of Gun Owners

In ruling that a database is not a registry, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that a record of sales database of  handgun owners names, addresses, social security numbers and gun serial numbers can be retain by the Pennsylvania State Police.  As a result liberty took a big step backwards in Pennsylvania.  Read "When a Record of Sales is Not a List of Ownership", and we hope that you will also be as concerned as we are that your names, addresses and social security numbers may find their way into some places you may not want them to be.



On July 15, 2003 Sen. Orin Hatch of Utah introduced S 1414 the District of Columbia Personal Protection Act.

According to a news releasefrom Sen. Hatch' office  "Provisions of the District of Columbia Personal Protection Act include:

 Permitting law-abiding citizens to possess handguns and rifles in their homes and businesses;
 Repealing the registration requirements for firearms and ammunition;
 Eliminating criminal penalties for possession and carrying of firearms in their homes and businesses; and
 Correcting an erroneous provision which wrongly treats some firearms as if they were machineguns.

August 4, 2003



Just months before the NRA is to hold its convention in Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh City Council pulled the welcome mat out from under our feet. With a vote of 7-2 Pittsburgh City Council passed a Resolution introduced by Councilman Peduto that expresses the view of the City of Pittsburgh that the U.S. Senate vote to reject S. 659, S. 1805 and S.1806, bills designed to protect Gun Manufacturers from being sued by cities that will eventually put them out of business.  When gun manufacturere go out of business that will result in a defacto ban on the future firearm purchases.

Voting in favor of the Resolution were, Burns, Carlisle, Hertzberg, Peduto, Ricciardi, Sciulli and Udin,  Voting against the resolution was Bodack and Motznik.

The resolution was introduced by Councilman Peduto on behalf of CeasefirePa.  See CeasefirePa News Release

According to the resolution "Congress has proposed legislation, S.659, S.1805 and S.1806, which would take away the rights of gun victims by prohibiting qualified civil liability actions from being; brought by the Federal Government, States, municipalities, private interest groups and individuals in any Federal or State court".

The fact of the matter is that the named legislation does not prohibit "qualified" law suits from being brought.  Any reading of S. 695 clearly shows that such lawsuits can be brought by anyone.

As of this date the Mayor has not yet signed the resolution, so members in Pittsburgh should contact the Mayor's office and ask he to veto the Resolution.


Semi-Automatic Gun Ban and John Kerry

If you want to know Democratic Presidential nominee John Kerry's position on the private ownership of firearms and the latest information on attempt to ban certain semi-automatic firearms go to the following NRA sites.



John Kerry accepts a Remington 11-87 semi-automatic shotgun as a gift from Ceil Robert, International President of the United Mine Workers of America. The shotgun is typical of the type of shotgun that would be banned if S. 1431, a bill supported by Kerry, would have pass the U.S. Senate.  As reported on the Drudge web site, the above photo shows Kerry's hand resting on the "pistol grip," as loosely defined in the bill. [Section SEC. 2; (H) (ii) and (b)(42): "The term 'pistol grip' means a grip, a thumbhole stock, or any other characteristic that can function as a grip."] The Drudge report reminded its readers that Kerry co-sponsored S. 1431 last year (“The Assault Weapons Ban and Law Enforcement Protection Act of 2003) which would have banned "semiautomatic shotguns that has a pistol grip.” If Kerry accepted this firearms without first going through a dealer and have a instant background check he will have violated federal law, the very law he voted for in 1993.  If Kerry would have transported the firearm across state lines to take it back to his home he would have violated Massachutts state law.


Doug Painter, President of the National Shooting Sports Foundation wrote a letter to John Kerry reminding him of his votes in the Senate attempting to add "poison pill" amendments S.659, The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.  In his letter he reminded Sen. Kerry of a letter sent by Ceil Roberts asking his support for S.659.  This bill would have helped to prevent law suits by various parties that are intended to shut down the legitimate and legal firearms industry in the United States.

Hidden Agenda

The truth behind John Kerry`s record on your firearms rights. by Wayne LaPierre


Why State Legislatures Should Reject Semi-Automatic and Pump-Action Gun Bans

Good Riddance to the Clinton Gun Ban

 Frequently Asked Questions on the Semi-auto Ban.

Crime Statistics for Pennsylvania and the other states.


At the Convention:
Dems Agree with Clinton on Guns
by John Gizzi
Posted Jul 29, 2004

No, not at all," was Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell's reply when I asked him if the Clinton-Kerry position on guns would hurt the Democratic ticket in his state, a major venue for hunters and gun-owners. The former Philadelphia mayor and Democratic National Chairman told me that "Most hunters in Pennsylvania realize that assault weapons have no place in the home. They have never seen an assault weapon used to kill a bear or an elk. They're used for criminal intent--to kill or maim." Rendell (who doesn't own guns, but told me he "fired the M-16 when I was in the Army") said "you wouldn't let Americans own rocket launchers and you shouldn't let them own assault weapons." He added that Kerry's background in the service and as an avid hunter gave the Democratic ticket "the most appeal to hunters in a long time."

Do you agree with Gov. Rendell?  Or, if you believe that he has got it all wrong, you can write him at:

Governor Edward G. Rendell's Office

225 Main Capitol Building

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17120




What the other side says about the Clinton Gun Ban:

"If the existing assault weapons ban expires, I personally do not believe it will make one whit of difference one way or another . . . So if it doesn't pass, it doesn't pass."  Tom Diaz, Senior Policy Analyst,  for the gun ban group Violence Policy Center (VPC)

Teresa Heinz Kerry also has a history in support of Banning Private Ownership of Firearms

In 1994 the then Teresa Heinz used her wealth to attempt to bring about a statewide ban on semiautomatic firearms in Pennsylvania.  Read Teresa Heinz Kerry - A History in Support of Banning Guns.


Brady Campaign Comments on Supreme Court Ruling

Jumping quickly to take credit for the recent Pennsylvania Supreme Court Ruling allowing the State Police and the Rendell Administration to allow the names, address and Social Security numbers of law abiding gun owners firearms in a database, the Brady Campaign sticks their foot in their mouths.

The Brady News Release expressed joy that the Supreme Court rejected our appeal, that the application record of sales database  must be destroyed as stated in section 6111.4 of the Pennsylvania Uniform Firearms Act prohibiting the maintenance of gun "ownership  records.". The Brady Campaign was happy that the Court rejected this challenge, declaring that "maintenance of a database, of handgun sales is proper" under Pennsylvania law, as such a database tracks only handgun sales records, not ownership."

The News Release went on to state: The ruling allows Pennsylvania to keep records similar to federal records required to be destroyed by a recent law supported by Senator Specter and signed by President Bush. That law requires Brady Act background check records to be destroyed within 24 hours".  Not totally true. 

It is important to understand that Pennsylvania is a Point of Contacts State (POC) wherein the Pennsylvania State Police conduct the background check on all firearms purchased in Pennsylvania in compliance with the Brady Law.  Pennsylvania does not retain the background check records on long guns sales. In regards to handgun background check records, the PSP is required to comply with the Brady regulations and destroy the records. This was made perfectly clear in a June 15, 2001 letter from the Criminal Justice Information Services Division of the FBI in response to their audit of the State Police to ascertain Pennsylvania's level of compliance with federal rules and regulations relating to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).  In that letter the FBI cited the PSP for failing to destroy the record of sales database.  The letter clearly stated that: "The data contained in the Record of Sales Database is in violation of 18 US Code Section 922 which prohibits retaining such data in excess of  180 days ( now 24 hours) if the firearms transfer is allowed.  Therefore, the existence of the Record of Sale Database is in violation of federal legislation."  


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