SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WEEK) — A Cook County Democrat is proposing a slate of new gun control measures with the backing of law enforcement and activist groups.
State Rep. Kathleen Willis (D-Northlake) is backing Senate Bill 1966. Willis said the bill comes in response to the Henry Pratt workplace shooting at an Aurora factory which resulted in the death of five employees. Several responding police officers were also injured.
“We were shown the glaring need for this legislation earlier this year when a man who should never have been allowed to obtain a firearm killed five people and wounded seven more – including our brave first responders,” said Willis. “A serious approach to keeping our communities safe starts with properly enforcing gun safety laws. This bill makes it clear that we are serious about keeping guns out of the wrong hands.”
The legislation would close so-called background check loopholes, institute universal background checks, require all gun sales to happen through licensed dealers, increase the period for approving or denying gun owner licenses to 90 days and allow for cancellations, require mandatory fingerprinting for all gun owner applications and renewals, and increase information sharing about prohibited gun owners or gun revocations among police.
“As gun violence continues to plague our state and nation, we are proud advocates of the Fix the FOID Act that would prohibit people with violent criminal histories from buying guns,” said Kathleen Sances, president and CEO of the Illinois Gun Violence Prevention PAC (G-PAC). “We stand by Leader Kathleen Willis and more than 170 organizations who have joined a coalition to put a stop to preventable tragedies, like the recent shooting in Aurora, Illinois.”
The Illinois State Rifle Association said it is still looking over the legislation, but pointed out several perceived flaws with the bill.