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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is the email from Dawson County Probate to my state Senator.

Dear Senator Pearson,

Since changes in the law as of July 1, 2006 regarding firearms license
all RENEWAL APPLICANTS must undergo a complete background check the same as
1st time applicants.
The code section that Mr. Blackstock referred to in his letter states
that the judge of the probate court shall issue the applicant a license not
later that 60 days after the date of the application. However the code
requires the court to obtain the appropriate criminal history report before
issuing the permit. It is my understanding of the law that if the court has
not received the criminal history report back from GBI/FBI then we do not
have the information we need to comply with the law. The court cannot be
compelled to issue the permit unless we know the person is qualified to be
issued the license. As for the 60 days there is an unofficial opinion of
the attorney general
PLEASE SEE...................
1978 Ga. op. Atty. Gen. 249,
Ga. op. Atty. Gen. No. U78-45,
1978 WL 17323 (Ga. A.G.)

Office of the Attorney General
State of Georgia

Unofficial opinion No. U78-45

Please note that since the changes in July of 2006 it is taking about three
to four months to get our reports back from the GBI/FBI.

There has been some talk of issuing a temporary license until the reports
are returned to the judge of the probate court. It seems clear to me from
the preamble of the new legislation that the intention of the Georgia
Legislature was to eliminate temporary licenses. Representatives of the FBI
and the ATF have been clear with us that they understood the temporary
license provisions of our code had been repealed by that act, and that based
on that understanding, they agreed to let our licenses once again serve as
an alternative to a NICS check when someone buys a handgun.
Since our Georgia statutes do specifically require that fingerprint
based criminal history checks be made for both license applications and
license renewals, the feds have urged us to read everything together in a
way which comports with federal law and that we not issue any kind of
renewal until those checks are completed, despite the legislature's
oversight of having left in the temporary renewal provisions.
Although I regret any inconvenience this may be causing to our permit
holders. I must abide by the law and obtain the necessary and appropriate
criminal history report before issuing a firearms license.
I hope we are able to make some clarifications in the next legislative
session.
If you have any further questions please feel free to contact me
anytime.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Burt
Judge of the Probate Court
Dawson County, Georgia


I am taking 1 step forward and 2 steps backwards. (99 days and counting) :cry:
 

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I think that email is particularly insightful regarding the current state of affairs with the probate courts. As I understand that, the ATF says, "We'd like for the law to say the following ..., and despite the fact that it doesn't we'll demand that it say that anyway." Well, I'm sorry, but that just isn't the way it works in a land of laws.
 

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Notwithstanding that the code section also goes on to address the 'no negative information returned' scenario, which our friendly probate judge does not discuss.
 

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"Some talk of temporary licenses"

?????????????????

That judge needs to get her head out of her ass.
 

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Judge Burt said:
There has been some talk of issuing a temporary license until the reports are returned to the judge of the probate court. It seems clear to me from the preamble of the new legislation that the intention of the Georgia Legislature was to eliminate temporary licenses. Representatives of the FBI and the ATF have been clear with us that they understood the temporary license provisions of our code had been repealed by that act
Well, it was not repealed, Judge Burt. The law clearly states that you MUST issue the license at the time of application, Judge Burt. So quit pretending that the law is something it is not, Judge Burt. There is not a single thing in the "preamble" mentioning temporary licenses, so quit pretending there is.

Judge Burt said:
. . . the feds have urged us to read everything together in a way which comports with federal law and that we not issue any kind of renewal until those checks are completed, despite the legislature's oversight of having left in the temporary renewal provisions.
The feds? Who determines state law, the General Assembly or "the feds" (whoever that is - some low level flunky that attends training sessions sponsored by the Georgia Council of Probate Court Judges).

Judge Burt said:
Although I regret any inconvenience this may be causing to our permit holders. (sic) I must abide by the law and obtain the necessary and appropriate criminal history report before issuing a firearms license.
. . .
Jennifer Burt
Judge of the Probate Court
Dawson County, Georgia
"I must abide by the law?" Really, Judge Burt? Well here is "the law" relating to issuing temporary licenses:

Unless the judge of the probate court knows or is made aware of any fact which would make the applicant ineligible for a five-year renewal license, the judge shall at the time of application issue a temporary renewal license to the applicant.

See O.C.G.A. 16-11-129(i)(2). It is not too tough to read, is it?

Why is it that every single court challenge to the failure to issue a temporary license has resulted in, what, . . . let's see . . . what did they result in again? Hmmm . . . what was it? :-k I resounding victory for the probate court's refusal to follow the language of 129(i)? A victory for some federal bureaucrat's mistaken interpretation of a very clear Georgia statute? Hmmm . . . no, that's not it . . . what was it?

OH! Yeah, now I remember - in EVERY case so far the recalcitrant probate court has immediately caved and issued the license before the case could reach the first hearing.

:lol:

Something tells me that Judge Burt, the "feds," and the other probate judges do not really believe what they are saying. Rather, they are simply holding the line on their deliberately ignorant position, obstinately refusing to follow the law until . . . until . . . until what? Well, look at the second to last sentence in the original letter from Judge Jennifer Burt, which tells us. The probate judges want to "change" the law in the 2007 session of the General Assembly. Good luck, we'll be watching.

And what better way to change it then to simply pretend like it is what you want now, even without a change?
 

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I have taken the liberty of re-writing the letter:

:lol:

Sgt.B said:
This is the email from Dawson County Probate to my state Senator.

Dear Senator Pearson,

Since changes in the law as of July 1, 2006 regarding firearms license all RENEWAL APPLICANTS must undergo a complete background check the same as 1st time applicants.

The code section that Mr. Blackstock, a commoner residing in my domain, referred to in his letter states that the judge of the probate court "shall issue" the applicant a license not later that 60 days after the date of the application. However the code requires the court to obtain the appropriate criminal history report before issuing the permit, unless, of course, there is no derogatory information to report, in which case no report is required. There is also since July 1 a NICS check which is instantaneous and gives my office everything I need to know about Mr. Blackstock in less than one day, but don't tell him that or everybody will know that we don't really have any good reason for waiting longer than 60 days! In spite of what the law says, it is my understanding of the law that if the court has not received the criminal history report back from GBI/FBI then we do not have the information we need to comply with the law. In other words, the 60 days really does not mean anything to us, just because it is written in the law. The court cannot be compelled to issue the permit unless we know the person is qualified to be issued the license - even in the case of the temporary license even though it says the probate court must know or be made aware of . . . oh, nevermind! Don't read that! As for the 60 days there is an unofficial opinion of the attorney general regarding the statute as it existed before the computer age
PLEASE SEE...................
1978 Ga. op. Atty. Gen. 249,
Ga. op. Atty. Gen. No. U78-45,
1978 WL 17323 (Ga. A.G.)

Office of the Attorney General
State of Georgia

Unofficial opinion No. U78-45

And although you and I know that this is not binding on us, we are going to stick to it! Please don't tell Mr. Blackstock that most of the background checks that are in the Code now did not exist when that attorney general opinion was issued, or he is going to think it does not apply today!

Please note that since the changes in July of 2006 it is taking about three
to four months to get our reports back from the GBI/FBI. I am of course including the time it took me to wait for enough cards to pile up to justify mailing them out. It is not like I have the time or inclination to actually mail them out on the same day or anything. What does Mr. Blackstock think he is dealing with, a public servant? Ha!

There has been "some talk" of issuing a temporary license until the reports are returned to the judge of the probate court. Of course, that "talk" has been in the form of probate judges issuing the temporaries every single time they get sued over one, since the law clearly requires that we issue them - shhh! Don't tell Mr. Blackstock. It seems clear to me from the preamble of the new legislation that the intention of the Georgia Legislature was to eliminate temporary licenses (please do not ask me to back that up with the actual language from the preamble, which clearly does not address anything after subsection (d), and its not like I believe that everything after subsection (d) was intended to be repealed because then I could not revoke licenses, as that power is in subsection (e), so I am hoping that my bald statement without any support will simply be accepted by you without question even though it could not withstand the slightest inquiry into its truth). Representatives of the FBI and the ATF (remember, "representatives" from a police agency matter more than what the law actually says) have been clear with us that they understood the temporary license provisions of our code had been repealed by that act, and I think some of them might even be lawyers, although I did not check, and that based on that understanding, they agreed to let our licenses once again serve as an alternative to a NICS check when someone buys a handgun. It really has nothing to do with the fact that the ATF wants NICS checks every five years and our license is only good for five years and has a NICS check. Oh, no. Nothing at all . . .

Since our Georgia statutes do specifically require that fingerprint
based criminal history checks be made for both license applications and
license renewals, the feds have urged us to read everything together in a
way which comports with federal law (please ignore the fact that there is no federal law about the issuance of state firearms licenses) and that we not issue any kind of renewal until those checks are completed, despite the legislature's oversight (clearly an oversight, right?) of having left in the temporary renewal provisions mandating that I issue temporaries!

Although I regret any inconvenience this may be causing to our permit
holders.[,] (not really) I must abide by the law (unless, of course, I simply disagree with the law, as is the case here - I am sure you understand) and obtain the necessary and appropriate criminal history report (you remember, the one that is not required unless there is something derogatory to report and even then must come within 50 days? That report! But that "not required" stuff is just the language of the statute - you see, I am SURE the General Assembly simply forgot to repeal THAT language, too - I think it says so in the preamble) before issuing a firearms license.

I sure hope we are able to make some clarifications in the next legislative session or this letter is going to sound like an after the fact justification for refusing to follow the law!

If you have any further questions please feel free to contact me
anytime (but tell Mr. Blackstock not to - his application is going to the bottom of the pile - again! Ha, ha, ha! :twisted: ).

Sincerely,

Jennifer Burt
Judge of the Probate Court
Dawson County, Georgia
 

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Actually the preamble is the only place the temporary permit was mentioned, just not the way the judge seems to think.

To amend Code Section 16-11-129 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to license to carry a pistol or revolver and temporary renewal permit, so as to provide that any person who is prohibited from possessing firearms pursuant to federal law may not be issued such a permit; to provide for a background check using the Federal Bureau of Investigatiońs National Instant Criminal Background Check System for permit issuances and renewals; to provide for a check of United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement records for noncitizen applicants; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
Which means that either it is just referencing what 129 covers (license to carry and temps) or it means that NICS should be used to check to for any reason a temp permit should not be issued.

AND..
SECTION 1.
Code Section 16-11-129 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to license to carry a pistol or revolver and temporary renewal permit, is amended by striking in their entirety subsections (a) through (d) and inserting in lieu thereof the following:
Seems to be either referring to 129 and what it contains or it means that since "All laws and parts of laws in conflict with this Act are repealed." means (i) should have been deleted, though the probate courts seem to be the only people that believe that.
 

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If the probate courts are correct, that brings up another question...
If all we can do is specifically alter the text or remove parts of it such as subsection (i)'s temporary renewal, what does that mean for subsection (e)?

(e) Revocation, loss, or damage to license. If, at any time during the period for which the license was issued, the judge of the probate court of the county in which the license was issued shall learn or have brought to his or her attention in any manner any reasonable ground to believe the licensee is not eligible to retain the license, the judge may, after notice and hearing, revoke the license of the person upon adjudication of falsification of application, mental incompetency, chronic alcohol or narcotic usage, conviction of any felony or forcible misdemeanor, or for violation of Code Section 16-11-126, 16-11-127, or 16-11-128....
Revocation does not list the federal laws that would disqualify for a new or renewal permit, does that mean revocations cannot be issued for violations of federal firearms law not already listed?

Also the same section says of damaged licenses:
...Loss of any license issued in accordance with this Code section or damage to the license in any manner which shall render it illegible shall be reported to the judge of the probate court of the county in which it was issued within 48 hours of the time the loss or damage becomes known to the license holder. The judge of the probate court shall thereupon issue a replacement for and shall take custody of and destroy a damaged license; and in any case in which a license has been lost, he or she shall issue a cancellation order and notify by telephone and in writing each of the law enforcement agencies whose records were checked before issuance of the original license. The judge shall charge the fee specified in subsection (k) of Code Section 15-9-60 for such services.
Again the judge is issueing a license without the background check as said in the pre-amble, so does that mean no more replacements for damaged licenses? You can only renew them now?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
state representative called

I thought some of you would like to know my state rep has a GFL. He called me today to discuss my firearms license application and the delay with probate/ GBI or whatever the reason is that I am over 100 days with no license. Anyway, he says he had no problems renewing his GFL. :lol:
I bet he didn't. Wish I could say the same.
He said he would look into it and get back with me ASAP. Sounded like he might be able to help me with this mess. I think I have complained enough, they are probably ready for me to be quiet now, - PLEASE-.
 

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(1) Did you actually request a temporary license when you applied?

(2) Is your current license now expired so that you are without a license and the privileges it confers?

Just for your own consideration, I want to point out that since you applied in September, the new provision relating to instant NICS checks (O.C.G.A. 16-11-129(d)(2), for reference) was already mandatory. Because this is a renewal application, they previously checked your fingerprints about five years ago.

As a result, there is no concern over your identity that justifies waiting for the fingerprints, because you already have your current license. There is also no concern over your criminal background, because of the instant NICS check.

I am not saying the local law enforcement agency should not check the fingerprint based records and report back to the probate court, just as the statute says, but I am saying that with the NICS check performed as the statute requires and nothing derogatory reported within 50 days, she ought to issue the renewal license.

It also appears from her letter that she is herself checking the fingerprint based records and getting a report directly from the FBI, rather than having the local law enforcement agency do it and report back if anything derogatory is found. That is not what the law says to do! Nevertheless, I think it is what the probate courts are doing.

(3) Are you a member of GCO?

(4) Now that you know your ORI number, did you follow up with the GBI, as some others have done, to see when the locals shipped off your fingerprints and what the status is of the GBI's review?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Dawson County

Malum Prohibitum
(1) Yes- even took a printed copy of 16-11-129 to the court with me. Just like the home page here says to do.
(2) Yes- 11/20/06. This was a renewal. I have had a GFL for 10 years.
(3) No- But I will send membership application to GCO ASAP. My eyes have been opened. Thanks for the link.
( 4) Yes- Emailed GCIC and a nice lady called me back the next day. Talked to her for about 20 min. She could not find any info about me,no request for a criminal history check, no investigation at the time and no investigation had been done on me or report sent. This was 2 weeks ago.

I think my application is still sitting on the judges desk collecting dust :cry:
 

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Re: Dawson County

Sgt.B said:
Emailed GCIC and a nice lady called me back the next day. Talked to her for about 20 min. She could not find any info about me,no request for a criminal history check, no investigation at the time and no investigation had been done on me or report sent.
:shock:
 

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Re: Dawson County

Sgt.B said:
( 4) Yes- Emailed GCIC and a nice lady called me back the next day. Talked to her for about 20 min. She could not find any info about me,no request for a criminal history check, no investigation at the time and no investigation had been done on me or report sent. This was 2 weeks ago.

I think my application is still sitting on the judges desk collecting dust :cry:
Is this still the case?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Update- 4 months and 4 days to beg the state of Georgia,of which I am a sovereign citizen,for permission to exercise my God given,unalienable,
constitutionaly protected right to keep and bear arms.
The GBI has finnished my back ground investigation. I should have my license very soon. Until then....


I am armed with or without permission.

PATICK HENRY ....
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
At last!! I picked up my GFL from the probate court today just before they closed for the day. Still, I am mad about the whole process and am letting my senator and rep know what I think of our firearms laws.
A few good things about my experience,

1- I have learned a lot about our laws
2-sent in membership application to GCO
3-let the ones who make my laws know who I am
4-motivated to make our laws better
 

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Did you ever get straight when your information was sent to GCIC and when they sent it out (in other words, exactly how much of that delay was attributable to the GBI, who did not even have your fingerprints yet when you called?).
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
MP, according to the info I have and my time line talking to GCIC it took 17 days from the time GCIC began the backgroung check until the court
called me to pick it up. I am certain the probate judge is the reason for my 4 month+ wait.
 

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Is there no way to keep accountability of documents?

Like tracking the progression and time of documents. ie:
turned docs into P Judge - May 1
fingerprints sent to FBI/GBI/GCIC - May 15
documents sent back to P judge - May 16
et cetera

Do they not keep track, and if they do shouldn't we be able to get that through a FOIA?

I'm sure this has been thought of before, I just wanted to ask.
 

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The GCIC will tell you. That is the reason we have an ORI number page here. When SgtB called the first time, after being told by the probate court about this ostensible delay at GCIC, the GCIC was very clear that they had not even received his fingerprints yet!

Sgt.B said:
MP, according to the info I have and my time line talking to GCIC it took 17 days from the time GCIC began the backgroung check until the court called me to pick it up. I am certain the probate judge is the reason for my 4 month+ wait.
That is very judgmental of you. I think you should give the probate court the benefit of the doubt. I mean, they already told you it was not their fault, but the delays at GCIC. Why are you being so judgmental?
 

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havoc1 said:
When I again inquired about the temp (I forgot my birth cert the first visit), I was told that the county does not issue them. I pointed out that state law specifies that they will be issued. Her response? "Where are you getting all this? The internet? I wish people would stop posting that stuff, because it just isn't true!"
 
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