A Colorado legislative panel has rejected a funding request to help clear a backlog of 12,000 state background checks related to pending gun purchases, according to the Denver Post
The newspaper reported Thursday the legislature's Joint Budget Committee turned down the request for nearly $456,000 from the Colorado Department of Public Safety, which wanted to hire 24 temporary workers to help speed up checks.
According to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, gun purchase applications have jumped across the state since the Dec. 4 killing of 20 children and six educators at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. The bureau, which conducts the checks, said the average waiting time now to buy a gun is almost eight days.
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Committee members cited two reasons for rejecting the request. Republican state Sen. Ken Lambert said he didn't think the bureau's "Instacheck" system was delivering much for the spent on it, noting that in his view the system any better than that used by the FBI to help detect potential problems gun purchasers or prevent crimes.
Democrat Claire Levy, meanwhile, cited a different reason, saying gun buyers should be charged a fee for the background checks just like the system used to clear people, including law enforcement officers and teachers, who apply for a concealed carry permit.
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