The best day of the year for New York gun owners? That sacred annual holiday is the day that politicians in Albany drop the final gavel on the year’s legislative session. Lawmakers called it quits in the wee hours of the morning late Friday night and into Saturday morning.
It usually takes a good day or two to sort out the damage. Our guess is that more bills are passed in the final 72 hours of session than in the whole legislative year. The last days of session result in speed reading bill numbers and roll call votes, with little public debate when everyone is home asleep. While New Yorkers were snoozing last week, multiple gun bills passed. Fortunately, most of those bills only cleared one chamber, but not the other. In order to become law, the legislation has to be approved by both chambers and signed by the Governor.
So what happened this year? The Assembly passed A.2084A which bans lead ammunition during the taking of game on state lands. The Senate companion bill remained in committee. The Senate passed several of its own bills without the Assembly companion bill being adopted. The Senate approved a 10-day waiting period on all firearm transfers by a vote of 42-19, but that legislation stalled in committee on the Assembly side. Several other bills had the same outcome:
S.1892, which added ammunition to the list of items prohibited from being purchased or destroyed by those convicted of certain crimes, passed the Senate but did not advance beyond committee in the Assembly.
S.2102 allows law enforcement to take temporary custody of firearms when called to domestic disputes. Again, the Senate adopted the bill without Assembly floor action.
S.6980A is a child access prevention bill that mandates the dissemination of materials. New York already has a storage law, but this bill mandates the posting of loaded propaganda. It shared the same outcome as the previous two bills.
Finally, S.138 was a terrible bill, which would have moved the certification of firearm instructors away from the NRA, to a state agency. The bill sponsor, Sen. Sean Ryan provided a telling justification for the bill. According to this anti-gun Senator, “The NRA has a monopoly on firearm training in New York. This bill will revoke that privilege from the chief opponent of our state’s gun laws.” That shocking admission translates into the real purpose behind the bill – political payback. NRA has certified millions of trainers over the history of the Association. There was never an implication that the current training standards were deficient or somehow inadequate. This was all politics, and clearly, Sen. Ryan has no issue sacrificing public safety when it comes to scoring political points. And by the way, Sen. Ryan, you’re darned right we oppose New York’s unconstitutional gun laws!
New York continues to push gun control. Incredibly, what we did not see this session was any sort of an attempt to fix New York’s soft-on-crime criminal justice system or bail reform. Again, that is because this is about politics and not public safety. NRA will continue to fight these infringements, whether it is at the ballot box, in Albany, or in front of the country’s highest court. Please continue to follow these NRA-ILA alerts for the latest Second Amendment news.