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Californians Are Stockpiling Ammo; Sales Skyrocketing; Buyers Fear Shortage

Californians Are Stockpiling Ammo; Sales Skyrocketing; Buyers Fear Shortage

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Ammunition sales in California have exploded ahead of the state’s rigid new gun control laws – and they won’t take effect for at least a year.

“In the last quarter, we saw a 33 percent [rise] in our ammunition sales and that’s projected to go up,” Monique Hall of Poway Weapons and Gear Range told San Diego’s CW6 TV.

On Jan. 1, 2018, a new law will take effect that restricts online ammunition purchases by requiring that all ammo sales or transfers be shipped through a licensed dealer. Ammunition purchased from out-of-state companies also will have to go through a California dealer.

Then, on July 1, 2019, a new law will take effect requiring background checks for all ammunition purchases.

The concern among gun owners: Ammo will be scarce and more expensive, as people stockpile it and stores get out of the ammo business.

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“We’re selling a lot more ammunition right now,” Patrick Jones, owner of Jones’ Fort gun store in Redding, told The Sacramento Bee. “And we will continue to do so up until the time the registration kicks in.”

All total, about a dozen new gun-related laws are taking effect in California, either this year or in 2018 or 2019. Confusion over which law takes effect when has impacted sales.

“I’ve definitely been picking up a little more than I typically would,” target shooter Mark Ball told The Bee. “I do worry about – not so much about supply but prices. The fact California has these extra rules in place, what’s that going to be like?”

The new laws impose a $1 fee on each ammunition purchase to cover the cost of the background checks, and buyers will need an ammo license, which could cost as much as $50 under the law. (The price has yet to be finalized.)

Another fear is that large retailers like Walmart will stop selling ammunition in California, simply wanting to avoid the hassle, The Bee reported. It stopped selling guns in 2003 for a similar reason.

If large retailers get out of the ammunition business, prices likely would skyrocket due to a lack of competition. And if smaller stores decide not to sell ammo, it could force gun owners to drive long distances to buy it.

“It definitely makes it difficult for a guy or gal up, say, in the Susanville area, or Alturas, or someplace remote like that to get to a big-box store, and then especially if your big-box store is in Reno and you’ve got to cross the state line,” David Bess, the chief of enforcement at California’s Department of Fish and Wildlife, told the newspaper.

Bess, too, is stocking up.

“I was just over at a place the other day, and I was in there with my boys,” he said. “I saw some (ammunition I needed), and I said, ‘Hey, grab as much of that stuff as they’ll allow us to buy.”

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10 comments

  1. I fear it’s too little, too late for them.
    .
    Those who can should run as fast as possible.
    Those who can’t, I feel sorry for.

  2. i tooted and i stinks
    -smelly

  3. you need to wash your mouth out with soap gosh you filth

  4. This is just sheer self-inflicted stupidity and I have no sympathy for the gun owners involved. Since the day Obama won his first election, the so-called “Second Amendment” groups, funded by the firearm industry, has fed us this mantra that “the gummint” is going to kick in your door the day after tomorrow and take ALL of your guns, so your only chance it to buy everything we make 18 months in advance of actual production.” Like lemmings, everybody followed. I should make clear that I’m not some sort of Nancy Pelosi ban advocate. I’m an owner myself. I’ve had to essentially give up the shooting sports, not because of anything Obama or any other liberal did, but because my so-called “allies” have made ammunition insanely expensive and virtually unobtainable at times. My Ruger .22s are essentially wall hanger curios because the ammo is almost never around and when it is it is priced at big-game centerfire prices. What’s the reasoning behind buying hundreds of thousands of rounds of .22 LR at panic prices? Do you guys think you’re going to hold off the feds in a 36-hour firefight with .22s?

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