CHICAGO

Cook County Gun Tax Starts: $25 'Violence Tax' Per Firearm Purchase In Effect As Of Monday

04/01/2013 10:52 am ET

This is no April Fools prank: Monday marks the first day Cook County's newest gun tax is in effect, tacking an extra $25 on each new firearm purchase.

Cook County Board President Tony Preckwinkle proposed the tax in October "with no apologies" saying the money would go toward offsetting the high cost taxpayers shoulder as a result of gun violence.

"There are responsible gun owners in Cook County who use firearms for either protection or recreation," NBC Chicago reports Preckwinkle saying at the time. "However, the social and economic cost of the criminal and irresponsible use is very high. As a result, Cook County residents are paying for the negative impact of a product that only a small portion our population uses."

In a Monday press release, Preckwinkle said she "know[s] this tax will not unilaterally solve the violence issue we face here in Chicago and other parts of Cook County, but it is without a doubt a necessary piece of the puzzle."

With gun sales banned in Chicago, the tax will be levied at suburban gun stores in the county. ABC Chicago reports some gun store owners have complained the tax will drive business away to untaxed collar counties.

The Sun-Times reports several gun store owners have argued the tax is a violation on their Second Amendment rights and have threatened to sue.

Preckwinkle had nixed a proposed nickel-a-bullet tax in October before the board approved her 2013 budget.

To stem the flow of illegal guns in Chicago — those purchased in the suburbs, out of state or by "straw purchasers" — in February, county commissioners approved an ordinance that imposes fines on suburban residents fail to report their guns as lost, stolen or given away.

Earlier on HuffPost:

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