Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Assemblymembers Joseph Lentol and Daniel O'Donnell today announced that the State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2018-19 budget agreement includes legislation that will keep guns out of the hands of convicted domestic abusers.
"Domestic violence is a heartbreaking reality for far too many in New York State, and we know that women, especially, are for more likely to be killed by an abuser if there is a gun in the home," Speaker Heastie said. "Last month The Assembly passed a series of important gun safety reforms and the inclusion of this measure in the final budget is a step in the right direction. I hope this will be the first step in enacting additional common sense gun safety reforms in New York."
"We need aggressive legislation to keep guns out of the hands of people who are intent on causing harm," said Assembly Codes Committee Chair Joseph Lentol. "Our budget will help do that. The Assembly Majority will continue working to keep guns out of the hands of people who have demonstrated they are a threat."
"We know that 54 percent of female homicides are committed with a gun, and two thirds of all women killed with guns are killed by their male partners," said Assemblymember Daniel O'Donnell, sponsor of the legislation included in the budget. "This bill will prohibit domestic violence perpetrators from lawfully possessing a gun, help protect women and reduce the number of domestic violence incidents that end in fatality through the use of a gun. I am so proud we were able to include it in this year's budget."
The legislation will require domestic abusers to surrender all guns, including both handguns and long guns, closing a loophole in New York State law. To ensure all domestic violence offenders are held to the same standard, the legislation adds domestic violence misdemeanors to the list of prohibited offenses, which upon conviction, requires the loss of a gun license and surrender of guns.
The bill will also:
Earlier this month, the Assembly Majority passed a common sense gun reform package which included legislation to keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers. It also would have prevented individuals determined to be a danger to themselves or others from possessing or purchasing guns, established a longer waiting period before delivery of a purchased gun to a person who has not cleared a background check and banned devices that turn legal rifles into machines guns, commonly referred to as "bump stocks."