U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) is introducing legislation to encourage law enforcement to report firearms recovered from violent crimes to a national database so they can be traced, The Associated Press reports.

 Durbin says the measure will help target gun trafficking networks, calling the database (run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) “one of the most powerful and basic crime-fighting tools available.”

According to the senator, less than half of law enforcement agencies in Illinois and one-third of agencies nationwide currently report guns to the database, AP reports.

His proposed legislation would provide a preference in federal community policing grants for agencies that have worked with ATF to trace guns in the previous year, the article says.