New Md. Gun Law Sparks Rally and Hearing

New Md. Gun Law Sparks Rally and Hearing

"No handguns being sold in the month of October," said Michael Faith, marketing director of Hendershots. "It will have a chilling effect on gun stores in Maryland."

HAGERSTOWN, Md. - A new Maryland law goes into effect on Oct. 1, 2013. It limits handgun magazines to 10 rounds, and adds 45 guns to a list of banned assault weapons.

New applicants are now also required to pay for digital fingerprinting, and some gun activists aren't happy.

"New gun legislation that's coming in is really going to knock our business down. Probably for the next four to six weeks we're going to have a hard time selling any regulated firearms because it's going to take that long for the Maryland State Police to implement the new procedures to get the handgun qualification license that need to be," said Eric Exline, store manager of Hendershots in Hagerstown.

A crowd gathered at Lawyers' Mall in Annapolis, right outside of the Maryland General Assembly. A hearing was held there Monday afternoon. The Joint Committee on Administrative, Executive and Legislative Review heard from both the Maryland State Police, and they welcomed public comments.

One of the reasons for the rally; some gun lovers, like Exline, say they feel the Maryland State Police went around the law to implement the new legislation.

"There are some things that they're thinking that the state police have kind of interpreted on their own, that maybe they shouldn't have. That's kind of the argument I’ve seen today through the session," Exline said.

Michael Faith, marketing director of Hendershots also reacted to the new gun laws.

"The law says if you apply for a hand gun license you have to get it within 30 days," Faith said. "I don't think that's going to happen right now."

The Maryland State Police brought in other law enforcement agencies to help get through all of the new gun applications. According to their website the current back log has almost 50,000 applications. The number of applications processed as of September 20, has just over 52,000.

"No handguns being sold in the month of October," Faith said. "It will have a chilling effect on gun stores in Maryland."

Eric Exline found the silver lining though.

"The positive for us is that it really sparked a lot of sales. I mean, we've been really busy because of it. People wanting to purchase beforehand," said Eric Exline.

The legislation was proposed by Governor O'Malley back in January, after the shootings at Sandy Hook in Connecticut. It passed in the General Assembly in April.

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