A Firearm Identification Card allows a resident to buy and own “small-capacity” shotguns and rifles. Handgun purchases are prohibited.
Last August, then-Gov. Deval Patrick (D-MA) signed a gun control omnibus bill, which enhanced background checks, created a new set of crimes involving firearms, and altered “the definition and some punishments relative to firearms trafficking.” It also mandated local police to assign a school resource officer in their respective districts, and required the reporting of mental illness or substance abuse incidents into the federal background check database (via Mass Live [8/14]):
Gov. Deval Patrick signed into law on Wednesday [August 13, 2014] a bill reforming the state’s gun laws, with provisions focused on school safety, mental health, background checks, and enhanced criminal penalties for gun crimes.
The law will bring Massachusetts into compliance with a federal background check system by requiring the state to report to a federal database any mental illness and substance abuse commitments. It creates new firearms crimes, like assault and battery by discharge of a firearm, and enhances sentences for existing gun crimes.
The law makes a felony conviction a lifetime disqualifier for having a gun license. It requires the state to develop an online tool by which anyone selling a gun privately must register information about the buyer and seller and receive approval to conduct the sale. It requires gun dealers to conduct criminal record checks on employees. It also includes additional data reporting requirements related to tracing guns used in crimes.