I’m sure many of you have already heard that there was a large amount of layoffs at SilencerCo recently. As soon as some of the effected employees started posting updates on Facebook the news started to spread like wild fire. SilencerCo has remained relatively silent on what happened or why it happened but immediately tons of industry people started pointing fingers at the rush to buy prior to ATF-41F ruling from last year, the new HPA (Hearing Protection Act), etc. and it certainly seems like the perfect storm has occurred. I personally do not know anyone at SilencerCo but I do know quite a few guys at GEMTECH so I figured I would contact them to get their thoughts on the situation.
Photo by NFA Review Channel
Ron Martinez, the CEO of GEMTECH and ASA (American Suppressor Association) board member, is in favor of the Hearing Protection Act and has been saying since last November (by the way, he was with the Trump’s in New York on election night and at the inaugural ball) that we do not have sixty votes in the senate, which is needed to pass and his best analysis is that there are ten red states President Trump won that have democrat senators up for re-election. This leads him to believe that HPA will pass toward the end of 2018 as an election issue.
Ron Martinez had the following to say … “Unfortunately there have been some misleading statements about the Hearing Protection Act. It will not pass in the first 100 days. You have to understand the process in Washington DC. I met with Idaho Senator Crapo’s office, who is sponsoring the HPA bill in the Senate. It will take a while as I have said before. The bill sits now in the Senate Finance Committee trying to get to a hearing meeting. The process is long and will take until the end of 2018 at best.
There are many other bills as well as confirmations that will pass before HPA such ones regarding income tax cuts, corporate tax cuts, building a wall, the fight against ISIS, Obamacare, new supreme court nominee and cabinet.”
As you can imagine, there are tons of people who have thought “Well, I might as well wait until the HPA passes to buy a suppressor.” Unfortunately we don’t know when or even if the HPA will pass. Those that are holding out may be shocked when the company they wanted to buy a suppressor from after the HPA passes is maybe out of business or that there is a massive run on suppressors causing a lack of availability and inflated prices.
The moral of the story is…if you want to buy a suppressor, buy it now. Pay the $200 tax and start the process we’ve all become accustomed to. If/when the HPA passes you’ll most likely get that $200 back. Years from now we may all look back on this and think “Man it sure is a lot easier to buy a suppressor now than it was back then” but you sure won’t want to be caught up in the mad rush at the moment the HPA passes.