Snyder signs Green bill legalizing short-barreled firearms

Snyder signs Green bill legalizing short-barreled firearms

LANSING— Gov. Rick Snyder has signed legislation into law allowing Michigan residents to own short-barreled rifles and shotguns, said sponsor state Sen. Mike Green.

Senate Bill 610, now Public Act 63 of 2014, creates an exemption to Michigan’s current ban on short-barreled firearms for individuals who comply with federal law. Michigan was one of the few remaining states that still banned their possession outright. The measure will bring the state in line with 41 others that already permit ownership of this popular type of firearm.

“Until today, law-abiding residents in Michigan were prevented from owning an entire class of firearms for lawful purposes,” said Green, R-Mayville. “They will now be able to enjoy the same firearm rights and privileges afforded to their fellow citizens across the nation.”

A firearm is considered short-barreled if its features, barrel length and overall length meet certain criteria. In order to legally purchase and possess such a firearm, an individual will have to undergo an extensive federal application process that includes a thorough background check, fingerprinting, approval by local law enforcement, and payment of a $200 fee. “Sawing off” standard length long guns will remain illegal under both state and federal law.

Green said that while the primary justification for the legislation was concern over the previous ban’s constitutionality, many firearms manufacturers and retailers pushed for the change because of the potential economic benefit.

“This legislation was primarily about taking yet another step in state law to better recognize the Second Amendment rights of the people,” Green said. “But it also opens the door for firearms manufacturers and retailers to consider Michigan as a real option for doing business and creating jobs.”

SB 610 passed both the Michigan Senate and House with near unanimous support and goes into effect immediately.