The U.S. House of Representatives Wednesday night passed by a 234 -192 vote an amendment to the Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill that imposes restrictions on the amount of ammunition the federal agency will be authorized to purchase.
“It’s going to be two to three years from what all the manufacturers are telling me before availability [of ammunition] will be coming back to where it used to be,” says Jeremy Alcede, CEO of Tactical Firearms. Alcede confirmed to KTRH that citizen consumers are having a hard time finding ammunition for sale. “So we ordered the equipment to start manufacturing our own brass, our own primers and our own bullets. We’re going to start making our own ammunition from the ground up because it’s hard to get components.”
Alcede says the ammunition he manufactures will not be going to any military contracts.
“We should start producing around 12 million rounds a year and we’re about a year away from that,” Alcede tells KTRH.
The amendment was proposed by Republican congressman Mark Meadows of North Carolina. In a statement Meadows said, “Over the past year, many questions have been raised about vast purchases of ammunition by the Department of Homeland Security. Earlier this year, we learned that DHS solicited bids for 1.1 billion rounds of ammunition. This is more than ten times the amount that the department purchased in fiscal year 2012. Given current inventory, DHS has nearly 4,000 rounds for each employee trained and certified in firearms use.”
Jeff Trometer, manager of Top Gun, told KTRH that ammunition is indeed difficult to come by. Trometer says across the country there is a shortage of ammunition in all calibers.
“The federal government is purchasing large quantities of ammunition and that certainly drains availability,” Trometer says.
The appropriations bill still requires the approval by a majority vote in the House and will then have to be reconciled with the Senate version of the measure.