The Oklahoma Senate voted 39-0 last Thursday to override Governor Mary Fallin’s veto of HB 2461. This bill would prevent police chiefs and sheriffs from stalling the transfer of federally-regulated firearms and firearms accessories, including such items as short-barreled shotguns, fully-automatic machine guns, and silencers. The bill, authored by state Senator Nathan Dahm (R-Broken Arrow), arose out of concern over the actions of some law enforcement officers who have kept applications for the transfer of these types of firearms and accessories in limbo, long past what would be considered a reasonable amount of time. This bill would impose a 15-day deadline on local chief law enforcement officers to process a transfer request once the ATF has determined the applicant’s eligibility.
This was the first successful override of a Governor Fallin veto. While Gov. Fallin is typically committed to Second Amendment rights, she criticized the bill, saying that it is an attempt to regulate a federal agency and serves no significant interest to the state of Oklahoma. However, the elected officials of Oklahoma have decided to stand up for the rights of their constituencies and hold law enforcement accountable to their legally-defined duties.