New York bill would require social media information for gun license

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New York lawmakers are set to pass sweeping legislation that would ban concealed weapons in so-called “sensitive places” like Times Square, public transportation and other places – while requiring applicants to gun licenses provide the state with information about their social media accounts as well as character references.

Debate on the bill began Friday morning in the state Senate, a day after the start of the special legislative session called by Governor Kathy Hochul – a delay attributed to last-minute negotiations on a concept agreement touted by the governor earlier in the week.

The special session follows a controversial Supreme Court ruling last week that struck down a century-old state law requiring permit applicants to give a “good reason” for wanting to pack heat.

Decision 6-3 gave states leeway to restrict firearms in “sensitive” locations while maintaining licensing processes that rely on objective criteria.

“We are confident that we are providing New York, once again, with an opportunity to not only be able to have their carry concealed, but also to bring New Yorkers to safety,” the Senate Majority Leader told reporters. , Andrea Stewart-Cousins ​​(D-Yonkers). Friday.

Democratic lawmakers have vowed to tighten the gun license application process following the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn New York’s regulations.
William Farrington
People commute on the subway in New York on April 13, 2022.
Weapon carriers would be prohibited from carrying weapons in public transport areas such as the subway.
ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

Among other information, potential gun owners would be asked to disclose all social media accounts maintained over the past three years as well as provide references attesting to their « good character ».

Private businesses will be banned from firearms unless their owners post prominent signs stating otherwise.

Weapons will also be banned from places of worship, public transportation, sports arenas, parks, libraries, government buildings, playgrounds, places of entertainment, events and businesses that serve the public. alcohol.

Governor Kathy Hochul
Governor Kathy Hochul has pledged to immediately sign the permit application legislation.
Mike Groll/Office of Governor Ka
Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, D-Yonkers,
State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins ​​pledged to keep “New Yorkers” safe.
AP Photo/Hans Pennink

Another provision of the bill expands a newly implemented ban on bulletproof vests to include bulletproof vests like the one used by a racist shooter while targeting black shoppers at a Buffalo supermarket on May 14. .

Hochul is expected to sign the legislation shortly after it passes both houses of the legislature, but Democrats in Albany expect numerous legal challenges from pro-gun groups.

“They didn’t just go to the line. They trampled on the Supreme Court decision,” said Tom King, president of the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, the plaintiff in the Supreme Court case.

Governor Kathy Hochul has pledged to immediately sign the permit application legislation.
Gun license holders will not be permitted to possess weapons in Times Square.
Christopher Sadowski
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, D-Bronx,
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie argued that Albany lawmakers still have authority over how gun licenses are issued.
AP Photo/Hans Pennink

« The Supreme Court said you can always have criteria on how [permits] are issued,” Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (D-Bronx) told reporters Friday. « And so we think that’s what we’re allowed to do. »


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