The recent passage of an extensive gun control package in Connecticut and progress on a similar bill in Maryland have led customers rushing to the ammo aisles. Connecticut was one of the first states to consider stricter firearm-related laws in the aftermath of the Newtown tragedy, and now boasts one of the toughest gun control policies in the nation. One provision stood out in the recently passed bill: the requirement of eligibility certificates for the purchase of rifles, shotguns, and ammunition.
The Associated Press reports that mere hours after Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy signed the bill, hundreds of customers flooded Hoffman’s Gun Center, a local gun shop in Newington. Many East Coast ammo cabinets have remained empty for months since sky-rocketing demand for ammunition began last November. Now however, hunters and shooting enthusiasts fear that the new laws may deepen the scarcity.
“If we can’t get the ammo, we don’t have money coming in,” Mandy Tomardy told ABC 2. She runs turkey shoots in Maryland to raise money for local schools and community projects. “[If] we don’t have turkey shoots… If I have to cancel the turkey shoots then that’s about $10,000 that doesn’t go back into this community.”
Maryland’s General Assembly passed their gun control measure on Thursday. If signed into law by Governor Martin O’Malley, the bill will include a ban on 45 types of “assault weapons,” limit magazine capacity to 10 rounds, and require fingerprint checks for handgun purchases.
A strong showing of gun owners in Maryland and Connecticut have decried these new proposals, while residents of other states worry that these sort of bills will eventually go nationwide.
“There’s a concern by firearms owners that this [national] administration will pursue bans on products, bans on ammunition,” said National Shooting Sports Foundation Vice President Lawrence Keane. “It’s not limited geographically to New York or anywhere else.”