BUCKHANNON — Beginning July 1, 2021, West Virginians can purchase small arms and ammunition with no sales tax included. House Bill 2499, which was passed on April 1, removes the sales tax from small arms and ammo purchases for consumers.
This bill also changed the tax structure for companies manufacturing small arms and ammunition in West Virginia, according to Republican House of Delegates member Robbie Martin. Delegate Martin stated, “West Virginia is now the best place in the United States to locate a small arms or ammo plant.”
Beginning in 2016, Ranger Scientific, a West Virginia rifle ammunition manufacturer has been trying to break ground on two facilities in West Virginia. On May 31, 2021, shortly after House Bill 2499 was passed, Ranger Scientific announced their ground breaking ceremony for two different production facility projects. “HB 2499 solved several of those ‘economic issues’ that were holding Ranger Scientific back. We expect other manufacturers to take advantage of the new tax structure to bring even more jobs to West Virginia,” Delegate Martin emphasized. He noted that one of the facilities will overhaul former high school grounds in Montgomery, West Virginia, while the other will establish a new facility in nearby Dickinson, West Virginia.
Ranger’s new Montgomery Campus will reportedly employ approximately 150 personnel. At the same time, construction began on their 1,029-acre mountain manufacturing complex that spans Highway 60 from the Walmart Supercenter in Quincy, West Virginia. According to a press release, “Combined, the facilities will eventually employ more than 400 people.” The eventual factory location was home to a former mountaintop removal strip mine. Environmental factors, amongst other issues have prolonged the process for Ranger, “but we’ve always been committed to bringing new worthwhile jobs to southern West Virginia,” stated Ranger’s CEO, Daniel Pearlson.
House Bill 2499 was sponsored by West Virginia Delegates Howell, Householder, Horst, Hamrick, B. Ward, Steele, Foster, Kessinger, Linville, Ellington and Hanshaw. The bill passed on April 1, moved to the Governor on April 2 and was signed on April 8.
Don’t miss the Saturday edition of The Record Delta for more information about how HB 2499 will benefit West Virginia residents from a local gun dealer.