March 10, 2015
Shooters and hunters concerned about losing access to popular and inexpensive M855 5.56 NATO "green tip" ammunition can rest easy for now, as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has announced it is no longer moving forward with its proposed framework to ban M855 ammo at this time.
Instead, the ATF will be taking time to review the record number of comments it has received on the framework proposal and further evaluate the issues raised in those comments. According to an ATF release, the number of comments on the proposal total more than 80,000, and the vast majority have been critical of the proposed new framework.
"Accordingly, ATF will not at this time seek to issue a final framework," says the Mar. 10, 2015 ATF release.
In addition to public comments, the ATF's proposed M855 ban has been rescinded after large opposition by the United States Senate and House of Representatives. Both legislative bodies submitted signed opposition letters to the ATF on this matter.
The ATF will continue to accept comments on the framework through March 16, after which it will process the comments and make them public as soon as is practical. Further, the ATF states it will provide additional open and transparent processes, such as a proposal and public comment opportunities, before proceeding with any future framework.
A release from the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), said it "looks forward to engaging in a dialogue with ATF to address this issue that led to the now withdrawn proposal." The NSSF also stated it will continue to urge the ATF to grant 32 long-pending petitions to exempt alternative rifle ammunition intended for the hunting market.
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