The House of Representatives Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science appropriated $12 million – more than double the previous fiscal year – for the National Instant Criminal Background Check System’s (NICS) fiscal year 2013 budget Thursday. The fiscal year 2012 appropriation was only $5 million.
While the figure is much less than what Democrats running the House have appropriated ($16.6 million in fiscal year 2011, for example), today’s doubling of the fiscal year 2012 appropriation is a significant development by the Republican-controlled House.
We have a very long way to go to reduce the 30-plus Americans that die by gunfire every day. And our criminal background check system is still woefully underfunded. But I applaud House appropriators for moving us in the right direction towards a better funded system that will help prevent crimes and save lives in the future. This appropriation is a significant move and a long-overdue signal that there are people in Congress thinking about how to reduce gun violence in our nation.
As the House sponsor of the Fix Gun Checks Act, the bill would strengthen the nation’s Instant Criminal Background Check System by (a) requiring a background check for every gun sale in America and (b) implementing a set of incentives and penalties for states to put the names of dangerous criminals and the dangerously mentally ill into the no-buy gun database.
is the representative of New York’s Fourth Congressional District. She was first elected in 1996.