WASHINGTON, D.C. – Last week, the ASA held its inaugural Industry Forum in Washington, D.C. The event, which was sponsored by Silencer Shop, was widely attended by industry leaders representing Aero Precision, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF), Dakota Silencer, Daniel Defense, Lipsey’s, the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers (NASGW), the NRA, Orchid Advisors, Perry’s Gun Shop, Sig Sauer, Silencer Shop, Surefire, Texas Silencer Company, Triangle Shooting Academy, Vista Outdoor, and Yankee Hill Machine.
The Forum kicked off on Tuesday evening with an informal reception near Capitol Hill. The highlight of the evening was Rep. Jeff Duncan’s (SC-3) speech to the group, which underscored his long-term commitment to finding a path forward for suppressors. Among the attendees were several additional members of Congress, congressional staffers, and representatives from a few of the non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) that we work with.
We began Wednesday morning by hosting a four-hour Industry Meeting in which we discussed past and future legislative strategies on both the State and Federal levels. The majority of the round-table discussions focused on finding solutions to improve the NFA process for businesses and law-abiding consumers alike. Later that afternoon, we met with ATF executive staff to discuss ways in which we can work together to make the NFA process more efficient. The day wrapped up with a trip to the CSF Annual Banquet, where nearly 60 members of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus were in attendance.
On Thursday morning, our group headed to Capitol Hill to meet with key members of Congress to bring our concerns to the forefront. Following the successful round of meetings, we headed to the White House for a meeting at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building with representatives from the Trump Administration. The meeting afforded us an important opportunity to share our concerns with the Administration.
Finally, on Friday, our group traveled to the ATF facility in Martinsburg, WV, home of the NFA Division. While there, we observed the NFA transfer process in person, tracking the life-cycle of a Form 4 from receipt by ATF through the mailing of an approved form back to the dealer. We discussed some of the primary challenges faced by ATF, including the extreme delays of background check responses from the FBI – an area that is ripe for improvement. Our attendees were also able to meet with their examiners, many of whom have worked together for years without ever meeting in person.
The inaugural ASA Forum was very successful in uniting our industry in a shared vision. We would like to thank all of our attendees for joining us, and especially Silencer Shop for sponsoring the event. We would also like to thank the Trump Administration, the members of the House and Senate that we met with, and the ATF for hosting us twice. We look forward to hosting our Second Annual ASA Forum next year. Rest assured, we at ASA will not stop working until we find a solution for suppressors.