Second Amendment Preservation Act to be Considered by Full County Board


Published on April 12 2021 3:45 pm
Last Updated on April 12 2021 5:04 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

The 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution, which states that the people's right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, has been the subject of discussion at the federal and state levels. Efforts by some to limit the scope of the amendment are worrying some citizens.

As a result, the Legislative and Personnel Committee of the Effingham County Board Monday voted to send an ordinance to the full county board for a vote at next week's meeting. The measure, the Second Amendment Preservation Act of 2021, states that any action deemed to infringe upon the people's right to keep and bear arms shall be deemed invalid in Effingham County and having no effect in the county.

The measure prohibits any tax on firearms that isn't a tax on any other goods or services, but also grants the county sheriff the discretion and authority to deputize US citizens in the county to prevent the enforcement of "any illegal directive infringing on the right to keep and bear arms." 

The proposed ordinance would also subject anyone attempting to enforce the actions deemed illegal in the county to arrest by the Effingham County Sheriff's Department and that a violator of the ordinance would be subject to a $250 fine for each violation.

The committee voted 8-1 in favor of sending the proposed ordinance to the full board. Once State's Attorney Bryan Kibler explained that the intent of the proposed ordinance is mainly symbolic, board member Joe Thoele voted No on the measure, as he has on other similar symbolic measures.

Kibler said the measure "tells me and the sheriff what we can do" and said, "It's another way to tell the State to cut it out" as far as 2nd Amendment issues. County Board member John Perry said if enough counties take similar action, maybe it will stop efforts that could infringe on peoples' 2nd Amendment rights.

Legislative Committee Chairman Dave Campbell said other counties in the region are watching what Effingham County does. A resident of Shelby County was present for Monday's meeting to monitor the discussion of the issue.

The committee also heard from County Board Chairman Jim Niemann that work is to begin on redistricting of the county's nine board districts to reflect changes in the population of those districts and to keep the population in each district balanced. Niemann said, the problem is, the 2020 Census results still haven't been finalized by the Feds. He said they will continue to monitor the situation. Kibler said the Illinois primary in 2022 might be delayed in hopes of having the final Census results before the election is held.

Niemann also reported that Mike DePoister is resigning from both the 911 Board and the Ambulance Oversight Committee for personal reasons. He said while a replacement will be needed on the 911 Board, he is for not filling a vacancy on the other committee since it already has almost a dozen members.