(WBEN) By unanimous vote, the Niagara County Legislature passed a resolution calling on the state government in Albany to repeal the gun control measure known as the New York SAFE Act.
Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Wyoming, Orleans and Livingston Counties have all passed repeal messages. Erie and Genesee counties are considering one to be voted on within days.
Niagara becomes the latest of several WNY counties to go on record, urging repeal of the new gun laws that reduces the maximum legal magazine size from 10 bullets to seven. The law also redefines assault weapons to include semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines that have one military-style feature such as a pistol grip, flash suppressor or bayonet mount, instead of two. Owners of an estimated 1 million formerly legal guns can keep them but are required to register them with state police within a year.
The Niagara County vote followed a late afternoon rally against the law on the Niagara County Courthouse steps with about one hundred on hand, and legislature chairman Bill Ross, a Republican from Niagara Falls says the voice of the voters is part of why they did what they did.
"As far as I'm concerned and my fellow legislators here it was the right thing to do. And we also listened to our constituents. and they were very clear on why they don't think this law should have been consummated," Ross says.
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David Godfrey, Niagara Co. Legislature, Public Safety Chairman
Ken Lovett, Albany Chief, NY Daily News
Canisius College Political Science professor Kevin Hardwick, himself a Republican Erie County legislator predicts that the urging from all these WNY counties will not help a repeal happen; Hardwick says that the state legislature and Gov. Cuomo won't go along with that.
"You would have the inevitable veto by the Governor, which would take a two thirds vote to override, and that's just not going to happen." Hardwick says,
"But I think it's still going to have an impact, anytime you have counties, public officials from this many counties standing up and saying 'This is wrong'," he adds..
Here's the State's Information Site, for gun owners who have questions about the new law.
You can also access it here, or call the Toll Free Gun Q&A Hotline at 855- LAW- GUNS (529-4867)