SPRINGFIELD, Illinois – A bill that would allow firearm owners to present an electronic FOID card on their phone, or any other electronic device, unanimously passed the Illinois Senate on April 25, and now heads to the House for consideration.
State Senator Neil Anderson, a Republican who represents District 36, which includes Rock Island, Whiteside, Carroll and Henry counties, sponsors the bill and said the bill is necessary because law abiding citizens should not be charged with a crime for “forgetting a piece of paper.”
“It happens to all of us from time to time, we forget things – in this case, it might be your wallet with your FOID card inside,” Anderson said. “But no matter how often we forget things, we seem to remember our phone. An electronic version of your FOID card would make things easier on law enforcement and our court system – as they wouldn’t get bogged down charging a law abiding citizen with a crime and then dealing with all the paperwork simply because he or she forgot their FOID card at home”Senate Bill 2677 would allow the Illinois State Police to develop a system in which a FOID card holder could access the system electronically and show law enforcement if he or she were stopped. The legislation would also require security features be developed to ensure the electronic version is accurate and current. Law enforcement would continue to have the ability to back check the validity and status of a FOID card holder through the FOID card database used by law enforcement. Right now, it can be a class A misdemeanor if someone is caught with a gun in Illinois without possessing their FOID card.