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Albion passes on opposing new NY gun control law

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 12 March 2013 at 12:00 am

Albion Town Board members may be against a controversial new state law about gun control, but the board has decided not to come out formally opposed to the legislation approved in January.

Many upstate New York counties, including Orleans, have gone on the record opposing provisions of the SAFE Act and the lack of public input in the legislation.

While most counties have passed resolutions against the law, few towns have done so, said Councilman Matt Passarell.

“It’s a county-and-above issue,” he said during the March 11 Town Board meeting. “It’s more symbolism than substance.”

Town Councilman Jake Olles agreed the resolutions from the counties and towns are “more symbolic.” But he said the state should hear from the local governments that the SAFE Act “infringes on our rights.”

The legislation has been criticized for being open to interpretation, for requiring seven-magazine rounds when few currently exist in New York, for requiring documentation of all ammunition sales in the state – “a significant unfunded mandate on business.”

Olles said the state already had tough gun control laws. “We don’t need new ones.”

Resident Dawn Allen urged the board to formally oppose the legislation.

“It makes a huge statement if every layer of government opposes it,” she said. “The more governments that adopt it, it makes a statement to New York State.”

Olles and Councilman Daniel Poprawski voted to oppose the legislation, while Town Supervisor Dennis Stirk voted against opposing the SAFE Act. Passarell and Councilman Tim Neilans abstained from voting.