New "Virginia Compromise" Bill Affects Concealed Carry, Gun Sales

The Nation's Gun Show comes back to the Dulles Expo Center with the first major gun show in the area since the Oregon shooting. This show bring thousands of customers and hundreds of dealers to town.
photo from the Washington Post.Jabin Botsford

A bill that advances gun rights and also meets some demands of those in favor of more gun control and regulation has passed the Virginia State Senate by a large bipartisan majority, and it appears the bill will pass the House as well, according to this story from the Washington Post.

There are three major items of legislation in the bill. Here’s a breakdown of each:

Several weeks ago, the Virginia attorney general announced that the state would withdraw its reciprocal recognition of concealed carry licenses from other states.

The new bill, endorsed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe and called The Virginia Compromise, will remove the Attorney General’s discretion over CCW permit recognition and the state will recognize almost all other permits from other states. That’s a checkmark in the gun rights column.

The second prong of the bill deals with gun shows. Under the Compromise, every gun show will be required to have a law enforcement officer, who has the ability to conduct a background check on prospective buyers, on hand. For most sellers at gun shows, who are registered FFLs, this presents no change, as they must conduct background checks via telephone or the Internet for all sales anyway, which is also presumably how the officer would conduct them as well, according to this story from heraldcourier.com.

However, it does allow private sellers, who sell too few firearms to register as a firearms dealer, to utilize the LEO to conduct background checks without the fee a third-party FFL would normally charge, if they so choose. Though the story says McAuliffe and gun control advocacy groups lobbied for this process to be mandatory for private sellers, it will remain option if the bill passes.

The third aspect of the bill deals with domestic violence. Under the Compromise bill, a permanent domestic violence protection order will now require the subject to get rid of his or her firearms within 24 hours, according to the story. Previously, such an order only prohibited an individual from acquiring new firearms and transporting any firearms.