Some Republican Broome County legislators plan to introduce a resolution this month stating their opposition to New York's new gun control law.
The legislators were joined by Broome County Executive Debbie Preston, Sheriff Dave Harder and Mental Health Commissioner Art Johnson at a news conference at the Sheriff's Office Thursday. The officials say they've heard a lot of anger from their constituents who oppose the new restrictions which ban certain assault weapons, limit the size of ammunition clips to 7 bullets and force mental health providers to report on their patients.
Legislator Scott Baker of Windsor says Governor Cuomo should not have rushed the legislation through. "There was little notice and little time to review that legislation and little time to receive feedback from the citizens of New York State. Now, many people are coming forward with many legitimate concerns about this poorly drafted bill."
Sheriff Harder says fears by gun rights supporters that further restrictions will be enacted has led to a rush on his pistol permit office. His staff has also been swamped with forms from permit holders who don't want their information made public. Harder says he plans to add another part-time employee plus use volunteers to handle the unfunded mandate. "That's where the biggest pain is right now. We're going to have several thousand of them. We have to look everybody's 3x5 card up, and then we have to go and find their file, then match the information to make sure we've got the right person, stamp the files and then put them away. It's a lot of work."
Harder has already announced new pistol permit office hours and raised the fee to $140. He says there are currently about 23,000 permit holders in the county.