Iowa Becomes 42nd State to Pass Hearing Protection Legislation

S&W M&P 22 threaded barrel model with a suppressor

One more state finally gets it! The movies are not reality and suppressors are not dangerous in the hands of citizens. In fact, they have several beneficial applications in hunting and target shooting as well as protecting the shooter and those in the immediate surrounding area. This week, on Thursday, March 31, Governor Terry Branstad (R) signed House File 2279, the Hearing Protection Act, into law. HF 2279 passed the House of Representatives with a 74-24 vote and the Senate with an overwhelming, bipartisan 46-4 vote. HF 2279 will go into effect immediately.

Supressor Selection
Suppressors are a great addition to most any caliber. They make shooting fun and reduce the chance of negatively affecting your hearing or those around you. In a home defense scenario, this is a serious consideration.

This makes Iowa the 42nd state to pass such legislation and legalize sound suppressors to be sold, used, and possessed. It also makes Iowa the 38th state to legalize suppressors for use while hunting.

The Suppressor Benefits

Suppressors foster a safer and more enjoyable shooting and hunting experience and will help ensure the propagation of Iowa’s rich hunting heritage while protecting the hearing of the shooter.

Suppressors also reduce the felt recoil of the shot. This, combined with the noise reduction, help to increase accuracy—especially with new shooters by reducing the tendency to flinch or anticipate the recoil. Less flinching allows the shooter to better focus on the mechanics of the shot and sight alignment. However, the biggest benefit is undeniably the hearing protection of the shooter and those who may be in the immediate vicinity.

As a side note, personally, I would like to see more suppressors issued to our men and women of the armed services. Far too many from each conflict either come home with hearing loss or develop it years later as a result. But for now, I’ll celebrate Iowa’s victory and await the day when a few more “straggler states” finally adopt common sense legislation to protect the hearing of its residents.

Let’s not forget where we owe credit for this victory. Far too often we celebrate the victory in silence without giving our due to the lawmakers, 2A groups and individuals who made it happen. Representative Matt Windschitl, Representative Terry Baxter and Governor Branstad all signed the bill and played a role in in its being brought for a vote. As for the grassroots effort, NRA members, Iowa Firearms Coalition, and the American Suppressor Association all deserve a tip of our hats for joining the fight for our Second Amendment rights.

Do you own a suppressor? Have you ever shot one? What suppressor tips can you share with other readers of The Shooter’s Log?

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (38)

  1. Not bragging of killing feral cats, just telling it as things were back then, and if you open your eyes and ears you will find metrp areas are thinking of trapping and hiring shooters as they already do with pigeons.
    The infestation of feral cats has led to vast declines in wild birds in urban areas, these wild birds some of which in hummingbirds case are now endangered, include ducks ( ducklings),
    Doves, Quail and native pheasants and grouse.
    Many of those peoples back then were land rich nut dirt poor, and I remember a.morn when upon opening up my chick raising pen I found 3 cats had.killed over 100 vhicks.
    Yes I killed them cats, and used.chicks for trap and crawdad baits.
    Those chicks cost , mixed run, some 2-3 cents each andbwe raised 5or 6 hundred up 52 canned for family rest sold $1.00 apiece plucked.
    Brother in law left truvk window down and a very large feral cat was.found sleeping on his seat, he grabbed it but it twisted bit into his palm and back legs pumped tearing ligaments and muscles plus infections that took couple months to heal and more for therapy.
    When man made unde $1.50 hr in mill his hids ate chicken a least once a week.
    Men took the meat left overs as lunvhakings.
    Cats also killed piglets as well
    Ever seen Maine Coon Cats, they get huge 20+#’s, and I senn a couple at diffetent times take on linx or bobcat kits to the death.
    Amd yup you can eat cats I sold many to dmall asian community and to mink ranchers.
    Only one or two real killers to just kill in the wild, weasels ermine and mink ptters of all varieties Wolverines, mdest killer God evrr made, and just like some high and lowlifes, if they cannot eat it, or screwnit they will just kill and piss on it so no one else wants it.; but none of them compare to
    numbers killed by feral cats, none of them.
    Also was a time when maybe just maybe as a pup or aged old farm protecting or hunting dog could stay in house on -20 degree days and nights, but no damned civilized human would let a filthy pissing cat enter withi. One foot no mattr how damn cold it was.
    Some of todays cat lovers should try being affectionate with humans, but maybe it is only cats that will put up with them.

    1. @Hide Behind:

      Hi, I tried to come to your defense yesterday, but I don’t think my post got approved by the moderator. Sometimes those moderators don’t get my sense of humor.

      I like many of your past posts, and I like your backwoods background, and I believe that if you killed any cats then it was for good reason.

      Also, your last sentence above…..”Some of todays cat lovers”…… ABSOLUTELY RIGHT ON THE MONEY!! THAT IS CLASSIC!! I have a cat lover living right next door to me, and she is a perfect example and one of the worst neighbors I’ve ever had.

  2. I have no problem with using them on the range. I have no problem with using them for hunting SOME animals. Predators, for example. However, I am not so sure about game animals. I’m not anti-hunting in any way. We need controlled hunting for herd management. But, many tools used for hunting give hunters a totally one sided advantage. Some may see this view as being idiotic, but I happen to dislike someone needing practically zero skills to bag their limit.

  3. I like cats, they taste just like chicken. Seriously, my family has had numerous cats, in fact we have one now, spoiled rotten. BUT, they have all been house cats, they never go/went outdoors unless somebody was right there with them. They are natural born hunter/killers, the only difference between a mountain lion, bobcat or house cat is the size of prey they can catch. House cats are really hard on small birds, a feral cat is just another predator. Feral cats probably don’t last too long away from towns and cities due to predation, disease, etc.

  4. Do a little research on the environmental impact of ferrel cats and other ferrel animals before you call someone an a- hole. Then maybe you could have an intelligent reply, even if you disagree.

  5. I would like to own a suppressor, just for the extra hearing protection. Once t the range I decided to try foam earplugs instead of earphone rental. They put me next to a guy with a 308 rifle. You ever hear a 308 report indoors bouncing off of a concrete floor? I thought I would have permanent hearing damage. OUCH

    May come in handy hunting, I had coyotes howling near my home once, and I live inside city limits. I just do not understand why they are so expensive. It is a pipe with some fancy washers inside? A nice military grade suppressor+tax stamp costs more than my AR15 rifle with hydro-dip finish and tritium night sights did. NO THANKS- until I win the lottery…

  6. These are not your everyday house cats. These are FERAL cats. They are wild and like any other wild, destructive animals like skunks, raccoons, rats, etc. They will attack whatever is available for food. A farmers chickens is a good example.

    There comes a point in time when the population becomes so large that trapping is no longer a rational route to take. If it was packs of feral dogs you better be ready to kill them or they will kill you. Cats may not attack you in packs, but they do carry diseases. Because of the food they consume, their bites and scratches can easily lead to infection or worse.

    Animals we look at as pets are considered a food source in some parts of the world. That includes cats and dogs.

    Consider Australia where they have experienced problems with huge overpopulations of rabbits and mice, wiping out crops. Natural predation can not keep up. The loss of crops has led to unforeseen effects. Cats wipe out rodents which serve as food sources for other animals. They also, with their activities, help aureate soils

  7. The left complains when they don’t do things to make guns safer…NOW they complain when they DO try to make them safer…
    can’t have it BOTH ways…
    oh right….they want to ban guns completely…so there would be no need for suppressors

  8. Im sorry I was trying to find this info but they are legal in Florida if you buy the Stamp Aren’t they? What is the stamp cost like $200.00 bucks or something….
    Thank you for your info

  9. Supressors make shooting much more enjoyable because of both recoil and noise reduction…I use a Specwar 7.62 for 4 different rifles – .308 precision, 5.56 SBR (which is very loud with th it’s 8″ barrel unsupressed), 6.8 SPC, and a .300 AAC). So my advise is to buy the largest caliber can that can be used for lower calipers.

  10. As a woods rat youngster I found work protecting the summer and fall/ winter hunters cabins they had built and all th old barns , stables out tbuildings and farmhouses on lands they had bought, what viscious varmit was my hounds and I with my 22 cal crackshot hunting for, feral cats
    Woods mice, packrats, bushy tail grey and red Euro squirrels and polecats could real make a mess of unattended homes and cabins.
    Some local jokervfarmers sold the gullible York and Boston swells on idea of getting cats,
    When the swells asked whre they could get cats well the farmers said they had lots to sell and they did.
    In a few years they began dumping all their kittens at hose places and they out bred thr rabbits which pissed offmyself and mentor.
    Hense a young lad whose mentor had traveled a bit in europe and he was probably best poacher to ever of lived in Canada or Northwoods showed the lad how to quiet even that 22 Bee or short so as not to scare other cats, it worked well so we split profits.
    10 Cents a cat and 3cents from city dude for hides meant I made more than some grown men loggers and swampers.
    Guess today making such a weapon add on or even admitting to once making one is illegal, and tis a shame there are no more such mentors for
    woods lads to of learned ways of animals and men.
    No that pipe and steel wool would not last long, damn thing used to catch on fire if using 22 longs so We made a pile of them.
    Polecats now they stink but not as bad as a packrat nest in a cabin or house eves.
    I got more for them and sold skinned packrats to city guy as a squirrel.

    1. I was thinking the same thing Catlover, what kind of a-hole shoot cats and brags about it? A total douchebag, one would suspect who has absolutely no sanctity for life except his own. Every action has it’s own consequence even if a person is to stupid & clueless to realize it.

    2. Of course if you let a cat run loose, you might be as clueless and stupid as you think the cat hunter is. Protect wildlife diversity. Keep cats indoors!

    3. My story as a kid is similar. My mentor was my dad and grand father. I got my first gun at the age of 12. And was taught very well the safety, respect, and how to use any gun that Was allowed to shot.At the age of 13 I would spend the summer at my grandfathers ranch where he had a lot of cattle.After proving to my old school Okie family that I I understood the necessity of fire arm control. My grand father allowed me to ride horse back or hike the woods with a his old 30-30 keeping an eye on his cattle. I was looking for stray animals. He would pay me $20 a tail.He would loose a lot of calf’s do to these stray animals. That was pretty good money for a young man in the early 80’s. I know that most gun haters think that this is crazy for a young man walk the woods with a fire arm. For the kids now a days this may be true. Back in those days it was ok to discipline your kids. with a swat on the ass. Not just put them on time out. Funny thing about that is that I have grown up a pretty good law abiding citizen that makes an honest living. I don’t think that a parent could allow a kid to carry a fire arm now days. The only thing that I missed out on was how to make a silencer. This would have help my tail counts. I just don’t understand the government laws against silencers. If they would be legal my grand mother would possibly still have her hearing. It is just another way for the government to take our hard earned money.

  11. Silencers were outlawed in the late 30’s during the great depression. To own one back then the cost was $200.00 paid to the Feds. They outlawed them to reduce the pouching of live stock. Probably sounded like a good idea back then, but in 2016 it’s ridiculous. I love to hunt and just shoot for fun, it’s a great hobbie. Wish I could afford them for all of my firearms.

    1. They aren’t actually outlawed under federal law. It’s still a $200 tax stamp to register one. Some states, however, forbid citizens from owning them.

    2. Had NOTHING to do with poaching…good try…
      agree it is silly these days
      I would even agree to register it/them…as they are not actually firearms…especially if it meant they were cheaper and easier to get…like no tax stamp…no 5 MONTH wait (with a trust…no LEO approvals…no photo or prints)

  12. In the wonderful state of California (HAHAHA). If you ride a Harley or drive a car with loud exhaust you get a ticket. But yet when we can find a place that is legal to shoot with out paying. you cant use a device to make our fire arms less noisy. This is just another screwed up way that our state is ran.

  13. I’ve been quite surprised to see so many guys using suppressors at my local AZ shooting range. They’re become very prevalent in the past year, just by my random observation.

    I have no desire to pay $800 to $1000, plus pay the feds $200 just to be put on their watch list.

    DaveW’s plastic jug comment looks like something to at least experiment with out in the desert.

  14. People like Sen Frankenstein (D-CA) have been falsely stating such things for years. Take her statement on “flash suppressors”. She says that they allow a shooter to remain totally invisible when their actual use is to assist the shooter in low light conditions from losing their night vision. This is how the “enemies” of freedom operate.

    On that note. Please spread the word to anyone who uses the term “assault ” in connection with firearms, to cease doing so. Call whatever it is (firearm, backpack, etc) tactical and leave it at that. Any time the word “assault” is connected it is just more ammo for the opponents of liberty and freedom. Thanks

  15. The tax stamp for silencers forces contract killers to live up to Hollywood hype and use pillows and plastic jugs. LOL

  16. We are the only country that has banned the use of suppressors, unless you file an application with the ATF and pay a ridiculous $200 dollar tax. All other countries require you to use a suppressor for noise abatement.

    1. “All other countries require you to use a suppressor for noise abatement.”

      This statement does not appear to be true. for example, after working in Colombia I can tell you that firearms silencers are in the same legal category as grenade launchers and their use by private citizens is restricted (prohibited without special authorisation).

    1. Nope…that is a federal tax…not state or local…
      just like weed is legal in many states…but NOT at the federal level…so don’t bring it in from out of the country or you will be fined…arrested if the amount is enough (truckload maybe…lol)

  17. Ah! Supressors, silencers, cans, whatever name they go by are great accessories for firearms. In fact they have been used for many years in Europe. Why then does one still need a $200 stamp from our wonderful federal government to own one? Are they dangerous or explosive devices such as a grenade launcher that might be mounted below an AR-15? No they are not, but are still on the list requiring a $200 stamp and the approval from the ATF to purchase. The last I knew, (it may have changed, but I doubt it), once one has such a stamp, the ATF has the right to look at whatever else an individual might have in their collection. I remember a friend in CT that had a non-working M1919 A4 machine gun on his coffee table that the ATF seized after barging into his house without permission. All charges were eventually dropped, BUT he never got his gun back either! So if you want a suppressor to protect your hearing and that of your neighbors, TREAD VERY CAREFULLY.

    1. The “tax” stamp has nothing to do with taxes . . . well, not only taxes at least.

      It’s intended to 1) make it too expensive for some people to own one, 2) serve as a means of control and back-door registration to the ATF can abuse your rights.

    2. They use them in Europe? Then why isn’t Obama supporting them? After all, he did say that America needed to be more like Europe.

    3. I had a .22 sound suppressor on my rifle in England. When I moved to California, I got the required paperwork from BATF (no E at that time) to import both the rifle and suppressor with me. My Californian fiance made me check back with the BATF and they said maybe it would be wiser to leaving the suppressor in England.

      When I arrived over here, nobody wanted to see the paperwork or the firearm. The customs guys said (literally) “A .22? Heck, that isn’t a real rifle.” and waved me through.

    4. The ATF thinks that suppressors act like they show in hollywood. They think that a suppressor is totally silent. Bunch of boobs running our country. My hearing is shot because of all the noise that I have suffered over the years. Standing next to 90’s in the army, shooting on a skeet team. Firing pistols and rifles. Working with 2 headsets in work for 35 years. I now have to keep saying what to the wifey. Gets old after a while

    5. Believe me…ATF knows EXACTLY what a can does…
      but Hollywood and the left have everyone thinking “silencer”…like it is whisper quiet…anything BUT
      and many times you need special ammo and sometimes a booster just to cycle a gun properly
      and don’t get me started on “ASSAULT” weapons … and “AUTOMATIC” weapons…GRRRR!!!!

    6. Having an NFA weapon or tax stamp does not give the ATF the right to look at what you have at any time they would like. They can not come into your house without a warrant and probable cause. They could possibly request you to prove that you are still in possession of the item but they would do so in writing and give you a time frame in which you need to show them you have possession still.

  18. Would be nice to have suppressors. The additional Federal paperwork and scrutiny and costs are ridiculous. These laws passed supporting their use should also remove these barriers. Suppressors are just a simple “muffler” and shouldn’t cost 800 bucks to purchase and a 200 dollar Federal tax and strict oversight which they do with full auto firearms. Just my opinion.

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