On Thursday, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad signed into law House Bill 2279, which legalized the possession and use of firearm suppressors in the state. Iowa was one of the last holdout states to forbid the use of suppressors, along with California, Illinois, New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and several others. With the bill signed and taking effect immediately, Iowa is now officially the 42nd state to legalize the possession of suppressors, and 39th state to legalize them for hunting as well. Governor Branstad signed the bill at a retail Brownells store in Grinnel.
“The legalization of suppressors in Iowa is a tremendous victory for the law abiding citizens of The Hawkeye State,” said Knox Williams, President and Executive Director of the American Suppressor Association (ASA), in a press release. “For the past three years, the ASA has worked alongside the Iowa Firearms Coalition, the National Rifle Association, Rep. Windschitl, and, this year, Rep. Baxter to get this legislation passed so that the sportsmen and women of Iowa could use these benign accessories to protect their hearing while in the field and at the range.”
Hearing safety was one of several reasons why gun owners and hunters have advocated for suppressor use. Also known as silencers, suppressors can reduce the noise generated by a gun shot, making both recreational shooting and hunting safer for hearing. There are other advantages to suppressors, such as reduced recoil, allowing shooters to easily communicate with each other at the range, and more auditory awareness in the field.
Efforts to support the bill were spearheaded by the ASA, the National Rifle Association (NRA), and the Iowa Firearms Coalition, along with other activist groups. The ASA says it will now turn its attention to legalizing suppressors in states that still ban the devices. SilencerCo, a renowned suppressor manufacturer, applauded the ASA’s efforts on Friday.
“SilencerCo has been a strong supporter of the American Suppressor Association since its inception. We’re proud of the hard work they have put behind HF 2279 along with the help of the NRA and the Iowa Firearms Coalition. Because of the determination and educational push by these groups, Iowans can now enjoy the same rights as are held by law-abiding citizens in 41 other states,” said Joshua Waldron, CEO of SilencerCo, in a press release.
SilencerCo is currently working to remove suppressors from the list of regulated items in the National Firearms Act altogether. The company also offers the EasyTrust, a simplified and low cost option for gun owners looking to purchase suppressors through a trust.