Firearms owners in suburban Cook County will face fines up to $2,000 if they don't report to police when their guns are lost, stolen or sold under an ordinance commissioners approved today.
The plan, pushed by County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, will apply to all areas of the county where a similar law is not already on the books. It will not apply within the city of Chicago, which has its own firearms statutes.
The County Board approved the new rules by a voice vote with no opposition. The vote came just minutes after commissioners honored Hadiya Pendleton, the 15-year-old girl whose fatal shooting last week has come to symbolize the epidemic of violence in Chicago
"This is not just a problem in the city, it's a problem throughout the county," Commissioner John Daley, D-Chicago, said while talking about Hadiya.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel also is moving ahead with plans to toughen laws requiring people to report lost, stolen or transferred guns in Chicago. The mayor's plan would include mandatory jail time, while the county version only allows for fines.
The new county gun ordinance will take effect in August. It requires gun owners to report the loss of their guns to the Cook County Sheriff's Office.
Preckwinkle argues the new rules will help cut down on so-called "straw purchases," in which people legally buy guns, then sell them to criminals.
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