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General Laws

Section 130B. (a) There shall be a firearm licensing review board, established within the department of criminal justice information services, in this section called the board, comprised of 7 members, 1 of whom shall be a member of the department of criminal justice information services appointed by the commissioner and who shall be the chair, 1 of whom shall be the secretary of public safety or his designee, 1 of whom shall be the colonel of state police or his designee, 1 of whom shall be appointed by the Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association, 1 of whom shall be the attorney general or his designee, 1 whom shall be an attorney with litigation experience in firearm licensing cases and appointed by the governor from a list of qualified persons submitted to the governor by the Massachusetts Bar Association, and 1 of whom shall be a retired member of the judiciary and appointed by the governor.

(b) An applicant for a firearm identification card or license to carry who has been convicted of or adjudicated a delinquent child or youthful offender by reason of an offense or offenses punishable by 2 1/2 years imprisonment or less when committed under the laws of the commonwealth which was not: (a) an assault or battery on a family member or household member, as defined by section 1 of chapter 209A, except that the determination to be made under clause (e) of said section 1 of said chapter 209A shall be made by the review board, may, after the passage of 5 years from conviction, adjudication as a youthful offender or a delinquent child or release from confinement, commitment, probation or parole supervision for such conviction or adjudication, whichever is last occurring, file a petition for review of eligibility with the firearm licensing review board.

(c) The petitioner shall provide to the board a copy of a completed firearm identification card or license to carry application, which application shall have previously been submitted to the licensing authority or be submitted to the licensing authority contemporaneously with the petition filed with the board. The petitioner shall have the burden to prove his suitability to receive a firearm identification card or a license to carry by clear and convincing evidence. The board shall set a reasonable filing fee to file the petition.

(d) If the board determines, by 2/3rds vote, that: (i) the sole disqualifier for the petitioner is any conviction or adjudication as a youthful offender or a delinquent child for an offense or offenses punishable by 2 1/2 years imprisonment or less when committed under the laws of the commonwealth, arising out of a single incident and which does not otherwise disqualify the petitioner under subclauses (a), (d) or (e) of clause (i) or clauses (ii) to (ix), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of section 129B or subclauses (a), (d) or (e) of clause (i) or clauses (ii) to (vii), inclusive, of paragraph (d) of section 131, and which was not an assault or battery on a family member or household members, as defined by section 1 of chapter 209A, except that the determination to be made under clause (e) of said section 1 of said chapter 209A shall be made by the board; (ii) 5 years has passed since such conviction or adjudication or release from confinement, commitment, probation or parole supervision for such conviction or adjudication, whichever is last occurring; and (iii) by clear and convincing evidence, that the petitioner is a suitable person to be a firearm identification card or license to carry holder, the board shall determine that the petitioner’s right or ability to possess a firearm is fully restored in the commonwealth with respect to such conviction or adjudication and that such conviction or adjudication shall not prohibit such petitioner from applying to a licensing authority for a firearm identification card or license to carry. The board shall make a determination on a petition within 60 days after receipt of the petition.

(e) The board shall hold hearings at such times and places as in its discretion it reasonably determines to be required, but not less than once every 90 days, and shall give reasonable notice of the time and place of the hearing to the petitioner. The board shall have the power to compel attendance of witnesses at hearings.

(f) All hearings shall be conducted in an informal manner, but otherwise according to the rules of evidence, and all witnesses shall be sworn by the chair. If requested by the petitioner and payment for stenographic services, as determined by the board, accompanies such request, the board shall cause a verbatim transcript of the hearing to be made. The board’s decisions and findings of facts therefore shall be communicated in writing to the petitioner and to the licensing authority to whom the petitioner has applied or intends to apply within 20 days of rendering a decision.

(g) Members of the board shall serve without compensation, but shall be entitled to reasonable subsistence and travel allowances in the performance of their duties.

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