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Politics and Government

Cuomo says gun safety provision still indefinitely postponed

Karen Dewitt
WRVO News File Photo
In January 2013, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the first gun control law to pass after the shooting at a Newtown, CT school

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been speaking out about the need for national gun control laws in recent days, but Cuomo says he doesn’t know when a key provision of New York’s own gun safety laws will be enacted.

Cuomo most recently appeared on Hardball with Christ Matthews on MSNBC.

“I passed what is probably the toughest  gun law in the nation,” said Cuomo, who said illegal guns continue to come to New York thorough other states with looser laws.

“The states can’t do this, it has to be the federal government,” Cuomo told Matthews.

The governor, who is himself a hunter, has also spoken about the issue on CNN and New York One. But he has walked back an initial call for Democrats in Congress to shut down the government over the issue.

Cuomo says a key provision of New York’s own gun control laws, approved nearly three years ago, is still not ready to be implemented. It would require registration of all sales of ammunition in the state. State police said earlier this year that the technology to implement the data base, required in the January 2013 statute, is not yet ready.

“We’re not going to roll out any system until it’s tested and it works,” Cuomo said.  

The ammunition data base was the subject of an unusual memo of understanding between Cuomo and the leader of the ruling Senate Republicans, John Flanagan. Shortly after the 2015 legislative session was concluded, the memo was made public. It said that the data base will essentially not be created unless GOP Senators first agree to it. The memo says no state monies can be spent on the data base unless the Senate and Governor both agree on a plan. 

Assembly Democrats are angered about being left out, and say without the agreement of their house, the memo is not valid. Cuomo says the memo is merely stating the obvious.

“There was a fear that the system would be prematurely implemented and then you would foul up sales and private sector companies, etc,” Cuomo said.

The governor says he does not have a timetable for when the data base might be implemented, saying it will be ready when it’s ready.