Bath police respond to new gun laws
BATH--The Bath Village Police Department announced on Facebook recently that the department will use discretion in the enforcement of new laws regarding handgun concealed carry in their jurisdiction.
"The Village of Bath Police Officers have been instructed not to arrest anyone with a valid New York state concealed carry pistol permit for possessing a licensed handgun in our village public parks or public playgrounds," the post reads. "The police cannot be everywhere and your right to protect your family and others is our priority. Many other locations forbidden for concealed carry in the new law will be referred to the district attorney's office for prosecution instructions prior to arrest."
Following the Supreme Court ruling that New York's concealed carry permit process was unconstitutional, Gov. Kathy Hochul in conjunction with the legislature quickly introduced and passed new laws to limit who and where a citizen could carry legally.
The discussions surrounding the extraordinary legislative session were conducted behind closed doors and while a typical bill will have three days of review before it is voted on, this measure was expedited through a "message of necessity." However, the laws did not immediately go into effect, but start on Sept. 1, 2022.
The designation of "sensitive locations" includes airports, bars and restaurants that serve alcohol, courthouses, daycare facilities, playgrounds, parks and other locations where children gather, educational institutions, emergency shelters, including domestic violence shelters and homeless shelters, entertainment venues, federal, state, and local government buildings, health and medical facilities, houses of worship, libraries, polling sites, public demonstrations and rallies, public transportation including subways and buses and at Times Square.
The law also makes "no carry" the default for private property unless deemed permissible by property owners. In response, area business owners have already began posting signs signaling legal concealed carry is permitted.
New York's yet-to-be-implemented law is already facing legal challenges.