NY Gov. Kathy Hochul Calls Senate Gun Deal a ‘Good First Step’
New York Governor Kathy Hochul is praising word that an initial agreement has been reached by Senate Republicans and Democrats on gun safety.
While the framework does not include restrictions on assault rifles, she calls the bipartisan agreement a good start.
One portion of the provisions includes funding to help states set up so-called Red Flag Laws that would allow law enforcement, educators and family members to petition the courts to take guns away and keep guns away from people who are suspected of being a threat to themselves or others.
The Red Flag measures are being touted as a way to keep unstable people who have demonstrated disturbing activity from being armed and carrying out threats of violence.
The mass shooting in Buffalo, however, was not prevented in spite of New York already having a Red Flag Law on the books.
The accused shooter, 18-year-old Peyton Gendron of Conklin, was hospitalized for a mental health evaluation after writing in a school essay that his future plans included mass shooting and suicide. He was not flagged by authorities, reportedly, since he had no previous record of trouble or making threats and he told counselors that the comments were only a joke.
Prosecutors say the teen had become radicalized by white supremist sites on social media during the pandemic and had a cache of weapons he had claimed online that his parents were not aware that he had been purchasing weapons.
Another big portion of the agreement involves mental health services in schools.
In a statement issued June 12, New York’s governor called the news of an agreement represents an “important step toward combating the gun violence epidemic nationwide.”
The Democrat said: “I am proud that New York State is leading this effort — implementing new laws that will prevent those under 21 from acquiring semiautomatic rifles, keep guns away from dangerous people, provide new tools for law enforcement and protect our communities. This bipartisan agreement is a good start, and I urge our partners in Washington to follow our lead by advocating for even bolder and more substantive reforms. Lives depend on it."
The deal is just a framework for an agreement. Legislation has yet to be drafted. President Joseph Biden has said he will sign a measure as soon as it gets to his desk.
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