Gun idea would hurt Cabela's

Letter to the Editor
Published: 1/22/2008 12:10 AM

Cook County government is currently considering anti-business regulations that will shift the tax burden from consumers to businesses and residents and put some Cook County businesses at a competitive disadvantage with neighboring counties.

The Hoffman Estates Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors would like to express its dissatisfaction and opposition to the proposed county ordinance prohibiting the retail sale of firearms at a location 15 miles or less from any other federally licensed firearm dealer.

The proposal further prohibits retail sale of firearms within one mile of any school, church, place of worship, nursing home, homeless shelter, public housing, or military installation. The net effect would be to ban the sale of guns within Cook County.

The State of Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), and the village of Hoffman Estates worked tirelessly to put together a significant economic package to entice Cabela's, a worldwide outfitter and federally licensed firearm dealer to locate in Hoffman Estates in northwestern Cook County.

This proposed ordinance would cause significant economic harm not only to Cabela's, but also to the village of Hoffman Estates, which estimates a local sales tax impact of $1.8 million annually from total sales and Cook County itself, which would receive approximately $675,000 in sales tax revenue.

The ordinances are anti-Cook County and create a competitive advantage for businesses located just across the county border.

As representatives of the business community, the Hoffman Estates Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors has voted to strongly oppose any legislation which serves to weaken Cook County businesses when compared to those competing businesses in neighboring counties.

Jill Blodgett

Executive Director, Hoffman Estates Chamber of Commerce