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California 2nd Amend. Political Discussion & Activism Discuss gun rights activism and 2A related political topics here. All advice given is NOT legal counsel.

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  #1  
Old 02-08-2011, 5:07 PM
AJAX22 AJAX22 is offline
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Default Are Police agency's 501c3's?

I just saw an email from a Police Department in the central valley area soliciting for donations for an event they are putting on (And its a great department I don't want to out them or cause them issues)

One thing that struck me as odd was that they stated that donations were tax exempt as they were a 501c3...

How can a police department be a 501c3 and yet the officers/chief can make political endorsements?

Its somewhat confusing..

Perhaps it was just the specialty unit that was a 501c3?

but the letter was signed by the chief of police and the head of the department..
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Old 02-08-2011, 5:14 PM
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The "Police Officers Association" actually runs them and is usually 501c3. Interestingly some, although rare, still have FFL's for their officers to get guns at just above wholesale. They used to pretty much all have FFLs until the additional licensing came to CA.
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Old 02-08-2011, 5:17 PM
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interesting. make a donation large enough to get an 11-99 lic plate holder.
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Old 02-08-2011, 5:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PolishMike View Post
The "Police Officers Association" actually runs them and is usually 501c3. Interestingly some, although rare, still have FFL's for their officers to get guns at just above wholesale. They used to pretty much all have FFLs until the additional licensing came to CA.
Strange.... the solicitation came from the chief's pd email account....

How can a non profit hold a licence that is specifically issued ONLY for the purposes of engaging in business?
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Old 02-08-2011, 5:46 PM
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It's common for agencies as well as associations to sponsor events for many other organizations such as the united way and the American cancer assoc ect. The take donations on behalf of the organization.

Regarding FFL's Remember you can have a organization or association with different divisions and "arms". LAPD's has their own store and gun shop.

http://www.lapraac.com/index.php
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Old 02-08-2011, 5:48 PM
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It's pretty unlikely that a police department is a 501(c)(3) org - typically they're a department/bureau of a city, which is a municipal corporation.

However, it wouldn't be surprising if there were an "auxiliary" which is a 501(c)(3).

A donation to a police department is permissible as a tax deduction for an individual, not because the department is a 501(c)(3) - it's not - but because Internal Revenue Code section 170(c) says

Quote:
For purposes of this section, the term “charitable contribution” means a contribution or gift to or for the use of—
(1) A State, a possession of the United States, or any political subdivision of any of the foregoing, or the United States or the District of Columbia, but only if the contribution or gift is made for exclusively public purposes. [...]
A nonprofit or tax-exempt org can be an FFL, or otherwise operate a business. The business must relate to the charitable purpose of the org, or else the org will have to pay tax on the net earnings of that business, but not on contributions unrelated to the business.

(E.g., a shooting club can run a shooting range and charge range fees. It can also function as an FFL licensee. If the shooting club makes money doing those things, that's OK, because they're related to its charitable purpose. If a shooting club owned a fast-food restaurant totally unrelated to shooting or the range, just because they thought that was a good investment, that would be permissible, but the org would have to pay tax on the profits of the restaurant.)

The Optimists' range in San Leandro functioned as an FFL at one time - a very reasonable and pleasant one, too. Don't know if that continues, I think my last transfer through them was in '98 or '99.
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Old 02-08-2011, 5:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJAX22 View Post
Strange.... the solicitation came from the chief's pd email account....

How can a non profit hold a licence that is specifically issued ONLY for the purposes of engaging in business?

A non-profit is still a business, its just not supposed to have profit.
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Old 02-08-2011, 5:48 PM
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Being a non-profit has nothing to do with "doing business."
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Old 02-08-2011, 6:00 PM
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Originally Posted by dantodd View Post
Being a non-profit has nothing to do with "doing business."
I suppose I should have been more specific.

The requirement for 01FFLstatus that a person or buisness must be one who:

devotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms.

This is the reason that the ATF has said that a trust cannot hold an 01 or 07 FFL/02 SOT...
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Old 02-08-2011, 6:03 PM
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Silly wabbit, the police aren't subject to LAWS!
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Old 02-08-2011, 6:24 PM
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Certain corrupt big city PD's are quite blatantly for profit ventures.
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  #12  
Old 02-08-2011, 6:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJAX22 View Post
I suppose I should have been more specific.

The requirement for 01FFLstatus that a person or buisness must be one who:

devotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms.
riddle me this, How did Josh Sugarmann of the Violence Policy Center have an 01FFL in DC, when he virtually couldn't sell to anyone? This was before Heller. He wasn't in the business of buying/selling fireams.



Quote:
This is the reason that the ATF has said that a trust cannot hold an 01 or 07 FFL/02 SOT...
close. A trust can't get an FFL (even an 03FFL) because the definition of a person in the GCA does not include trusts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GCA definition
Person. Any individual, corporation, company, association, firm, partnership, society, or joint stock company.
no mention of trust, therefore a trust can't get an FFL.



The NFA definition of person does include trusts, which is why trusts can own NFA items:

Quote:
Originally Posted by NFA definition
Person. A partnership, company, association, trust, estate, or corporation, as well as a natural person.
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Old 02-08-2011, 7:36 PM
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Wait..... So a society CAN have an FFL?

and we do NOT have to engage in buisnes to have one?

What stops us from forming the society of responsible gun ownership... a not for proffit assosiation who holds an 07/02 and who's members are authorized by the bylaws to make NFA items for 'testing, development, experimentation, and entertainment' provided we file the paperwork with the society's administrators ahead of time?
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Old 02-08-2011, 7:42 PM
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not withstanding the VPC FFL, ATF has normally taken the position that you do have to engage in the firearms business to have an FFL (excluding 03FFL). But yes, a society is considered a "person" per the GCA. The GCA says that a "person" can get an FFL in order to engage in the business of firearms.
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Old 02-08-2011, 8:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ke6guj View Post
not withstanding the VPC FFL, ATF has normally taken the position that you do have to engage in the firearms business to have an FFL (excluding 03FFL). But yes, a society is considered a "person" per the GCA. The GCA says that a "person" can get an FFL in order to engage in the business of firearms.
How would that apply to having no centralized storage of the firearms? would one FFL held by a society or other corporate entity be able to extend to firearms held by agents of the company in multiple locations?
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Old 02-08-2011, 8:23 PM
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there is nothing that says that an FFL must store firearms at either of the addresses listed on the FFL already. In addition, I would remind you that the FFL, even in the name of a society, must be done under the name of a phyiscal person, the responsible party.

determining who can have possesion of firearms that are listed on the bound book of the FFL, I dunno how far you could extend it. But that does get done right now with corporate FFLs. I'm not sure where ATF draws the line on people having firearms on the books of the FFL but kept outside by members of the corp.
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Old 02-08-2011, 9:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ke6guj View Post
there is nothing that says that an FFL must store firearms at either of the addresses listed on the FFL already. In addition, I would remind you that the FFL, even in the name of a society, must be done under the name of a phyiscal person, the responsible party.

determining who can have possesion of firearms that are listed on the bound book of the FFL, I dunno how far you could extend it. But that does get done right now with corporate FFLs. I'm not sure where ATF draws the line on people having firearms on the books of the FFL but kept outside by members of the corp.
I think allocation determination would be outlined by the articles of incorporation... (or society bylaws?)

depending on how the society was organized the atf could have quite a difficult time going after them...

I'd be very interested to see how far you could push it...

could one FFL cover firearms held in multiple states?
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Old 02-08-2011, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJAX22 View Post
I think allocation determination would be outlined by the articles of incorporation... (or society bylaws?)

depending on how the society was organized the atf could have quite a difficult time going after them...

I'd be very interested to see how far you could push it...

could one FFL cover firearms held in multiple states?
Allocation might only be addressed in policies and procedures; it's doubtful any corp would address such matters in their articles, though bylaws might be used to state intent.
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Old 02-08-2011, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Civilitant View Post
interesting. make a donation large enough to get an 11-99 lic plate holder.
why not just join? its a good organizatino.
http://www.chp11-99.org/programs/pro...tm?cat_id=2365
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Old 02-09-2011, 8:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJAX22 View Post
I suppose I should have been more specific.

The requirement for 01FFLstatus that a person or buisness must be one who:

devotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms.

This is the reason that the ATF has said that a trust cannot hold an 01 or 07 FFL/02 SOT...
An individual can be for-profit, while working for a non-profit. There are plenty of non-profit organizations with employees collecting pay checks, all across this country. They're not exclusively volunteer organizations. Perhaps the FFL is making money?
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