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Contact: Alan Grattidge, (518)885-2240 IMMEDIATE RELEASE

FOR February 25, 2013

Statement from Chairman Alan Grattidge

County Supervisors Analyzing SAFE Act, Will Carry Concerns to State Legislature

(Ballston Spa, NY) Supervisor Alan Grattidge, Chairman of the Saratoga County Board of Supervisors, today released the following statement regarding the Boards ongoing analysis and activities concerning the New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement (SAFE) Act of 2013 (A.2388/S.2230):

Less than six weeks ago, Governor Cuomo signed a wide-ranging bill that will have substantial impacts on the Second Amendment rights of citizens, and county government operations. By all accounts even supporters who admit that chapter amendments will be necessary the bill has major flaws, and its passage was rushed. This bill is also extremely complicated. It amends the criminal procedure law, the correction law, the family court act, the executive law, the general business law, the judiciary law, the mental hygiene law, the penal law, the surrogates court procedure act, the domestic relations law, Kendra's Law and the education law.

Since this bill was signed, the Board of Supervisors and our countys administrative officials have been working diligently to assess its many implications, particularly those that will affect county operations and finances. This new law demands careful analysis and we refuse to act in haste, as the State Legislature did when it passed the bill. Our analysis is focused first and foremost on the county departments most affected by the law: the Sheriffs office, County Clerk, County Attorney and Mental Health. We are also speaking with our many constituents and community organizations that represent Saratoga County residents and have voiced their opinions on the law, both pro and con. Our County Sheriff and our Deputy Sheriffs have also made public statements, which weigh heavily in our analysis.

On Thursday, February 28th, I will lead a delegation of County Supervisors to the State Capitol to speak with Saratoga Countys State Senators and Assemblymen on issues of importance to our county. The concerns I have regarding the NY SAFE Act 1

will be an important part of that conversation. I strongly object to the rushed and flawed process that was used to pass this law, which excluded any input from concerned citizens. I object to how the law may lead to greater expenses of money and time for the County, in effect creating a new unfunded mandate. I do not believe that county residents should have to fill out forms to protect their privacy privacy is a right and we should all be protected by default. Counties currently do a good job maintaining pistol permit records efficiently and securely, and Im concerned that this law will spend taxpayer dollars to fix a system that is not broken in a manner that could jeopardize the security of that information. The law will require a massive investment of state dollars to implement, which will divert resources away from other criminal justice initiatives that keep people safe. There are real questions as to whether provisions in this law are even enforceable.

Finally, as a supporter of the Second Amendment, I believe we have God-given, fundamental, Constitutional rights to keep and bear arms and the right to selfdefense. I believe this law seeks to erode those rights, and for that reason I believe it should be repealed. Much of the law simply restricts the activities of law-abiding citizens, not the law breakers who are the problem in the first place. Other provisions actually criminalize law-abiding citizens including police officers simply for owning firearms and magazines that were arbitrarily chosen for inclusion in the law.

Our representatives in Albany passed this bill, and any legislative effort to amend or repeal it depends on the state legislature and the governor alone. I look forward to sharing my views and recommendations with our State Legislators on Thursday, and I strongly urge all County residents who want their voices heard to also contact their senators, assembly members and Governor Cuomo.


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