Illinois Diverts $30 Million from FOID Fund to Bail Out General Fund

Chatsworth, IL — Illinois gun owners are being taken to the cleaners by their politicians who spend money like drunken sailors.

News broke this week that nearly $30 million dollars in FOID feeds has been “diverted” to the general fund.

This money should have been used to speed up the notoriously backlogged FOID system for the gun owners who have paid into it.  Another legitimate use of the money would be to use it for administration of the Illinois Concealed Carry License program.

Instead it’s being diverted to cover Illinois massive budget deficits.

Now, it’s bad enough that their dollars are being “diverted”—a fancy word for stolen—from their intended use.  But when you consider the backlog and the delays faced by those in Illinois who are unable to get their FOID card or to get their Concealed Carry License, you realize that this is literally stopping people from being able to exercise their Second Amendment Rights.

So Illinois gun owners have paid tens of millions of dollars in fees to create an infrastructure that would allow them to quickly receive the paperwork to buy and carry a gun for personal defense.

Instead, their money was taken to cover whatever insane thing their politicians have voted to fund, while gun owners are stuck waiting months for their paperwork to go through.

“Gun Owners Need to Pay Their Own Way”

The real kick in the teeth?

Anti-gun activists and lobbyists were trying to double the fees for FOID and CCL during the upcoming legislative session.  They pointed to the massive deficits and backlogs in processing applications as proof that the current fees weren’t high enough and should be doubled.

This threat prompted Richard Pearson, the Executive Director of the Illinois State Rifle Association to partner with Rep. Wheeler (R-Oswego).  They worked with the Legislative Research Unit get good data on where gun owners’ dollars were going.

Turns out these programs DO pay for themselves to run efficiently.

Pearson was rightly vocal about their findings.

“Clearly, there is not a problem in lack of money from these fees, but an improper allocation of how the money is being spent. It is unconscionable for the Governor and the Legislature to ask for honest gun owners to pay more money for a Constitutional Right when the money they are already paying is going to fund other programs and services.”

Pearson and his organization have called on Governor JB Pritzker to stop the funds sweeps.  These corrupt fund sweets are emptying gun owners’ programs faster than they can be filled.  At the end of the day, they leave law-abiding citizens unarmed and unable to defend themselves.

They Do What They Know They Can Get Away With

We know that politicians fleecing gun owners while the media maligns them for all of society’s problems is not new.  It’s normal to treat gun owners like a dumb cash cow.  A useful cash cow that just stands around waiting to be kicked or mocked for anything that goes wrong.

Those days are over.  Gun owners are flexing their muscles nationwide.  It’s time the legislators learn that there is a high political price to pay for stabbing gun owners in the back.