New York State has passed new restrictions on the use and availability of firearms following a Supreme Court ruling that struck down New York’s long-standing requirement that gun owners demonstrate proper cause before obtain a permit to carry a concealed weapon.
On Friday July 1, Governor Kathy Hochul signed a package of new laws devised to align with the Supreme Court’s recent decision in NYSRPA v. Bruen, a ruling that could lead to an increase in licenses and in the number of individuals who will likely purchase and carry weapons in the empire state.
“A week ago, the Supreme Court issued a reckless decision removing century-old limitations on who is allowed to carry concealed weapons in our state — senselessly sending us backward and putting the safety of our residents in jeopardy,” Governor Hochul said. “Today, we are taking swift and bold action to protect New Yorkers. After a close review of the NYS-RPA vs. Bruen decision and extensive discussions with constitutional and policy experts, advocates, and legislative partners.”
According to a press release issued by the governor’s office, research has demonstrated that violent crime involving firearms increases by 29 percent when people are given the right to carry handguns, caused in part by a 35 percent increase in gun theft and a 13 percent decrease in the rate that police solved cases. The legislative package passed last week aims to mitigate that forecasted violence in a number of ways.
First and foremost, the new laws will expand on eligibility requirements in the concealed carry permitting process, including completed firearm training courses for applicants. Under the new law, New York state will create a standardized training process for all applicants. Additionally, applicants who have documented instances of violent behavior will be disqualified from obtaining a concealed carry permit. Disqualifying criteria also includes misdemeanor convictions for weapons possession and menacing, recent treatment for drug-related reasons, and for alcohol-related misdemeanor convictions.
Secondly, the new legislative package establishes a list of “sensitive locations” which will have a zero tolerance policy for conclude carry; those locations include, Airports, Bars and Restaurants that serve alcohol, Courthouses, Daycares, Libraries, Polling Sites, all Public Transit, DayCar facilities, entertainment venues, and Educational Institutions. Individuals who carry concealed weapons in sensitive locations or in contravention of the authority of an owner of private property will face criminal penalties. The law also establishes ‘no carry’ as the default for private property, unless deemed permissible by property owners. Property owners who do decide to allow concealed carry will have to disclose with signage saying concealed carry is allowed on the premises.
The legislation also implements new safe storage requirements for rifles, shotguns, and firearms. Gun owners will be prohibited from leaving a gun in their car unless it is stored in a lock box. Additionally, state law previously required that guns be stored safely in a home if someone under 16 resides there, but new legislation will require safe gun ownership in a home if someone under 18 resides there.
Finally, the new legislation will establish state oversight over back-ground checks for firearms and regular checks on license holders for criminal convictions’ legislation allows the state to conduct and have oversight over background checks for firearms and run regular checks on license holders for criminal convictions. State background checks will go beyond those conducted by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System maintained by the FBI, which lack access to crucial state-owned and local-owned records and databases that provide a more accurate assessment of an applicant’s background. Research has found that states that perform their own background checks, instead of solely using the federal database, experience 27 percent lower firearm suicide rates and 22 percent lower firearm homicide rates. The legislation also requires background checks for ammunition sales and creates a statewide license and ammunition database