Chicago passes revised gun law, allowing handgun ownership

The new gun law, which effectively puts an end to Chicago’s controversial handgun ban, establishes strict guidelines about who can apply for a permit.

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    A customer inspects a 9mm handgun at Rink's Gun and Sport in the Chicago suburb of Lockport . Thanks to a Supreme Court ruling that struck down Chicago's strict handgun ban, law-abiding residents will soon be able to legally own a handgun.
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One day after Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley unveiled a proposed ordinance regulating firearm ownership, the Chicago City Council passed it by a vote of 45 to 0.

The revised gun law effectively puts an end to Chicago’s controversial handgun ban, which was the last of its kind in the United States. On Monday, the US Supreme Court issued a ruling that put the handgun ban into jeopardy.

The new ordinance allows handgun ownership in Chicago but establishes strict guidelines about who can apply for a permit. It prohibits gun shops within city limits and requires potential handgun owners to register their guns with the Chicago Police Department. In addition, it requires handgun owners to have both a city permit and a state firearms identification card.

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The new ordinance also addresses where handguns can be stored, saying that home storage does not include a garage, front porch, or yard. Other excluded sites for storage are hotels, dorms, and group living facilities. For transport outside the home, guns would need to be broken down and not trigger ready.

The ordinance will become law in 10 days. It will then take up to four months for anyone who wants to legally own a gun in his or her home to go through the process.

Chicago aldermen were unanimous in their support of the ordinance. That included Alderman Rey Colon of the 35th Ward who, in remarks before the council, said gun-rights advocates do not understand how unregulated rules on gun ownership threaten neighborhood safety.

“I understand the right to bear arms, but I also understand parents crying in their sleep,” he said.

Mr. Colon’s brother died of a gunshot in 1979.


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