New York’s Democratic governor signs law restricting concealed carry of firearms following Supreme Court ruling

By Lauren del Valle and Veronica Stracqualursi, CNN

New York Democratic Governor Kathy Hochul on Friday signed into law a bill restricting the concealed carry of firearms in places such as government buildings and schools after the U.S. Supreme Court last week. overturned the state’s century-old law which imposed restrictions on the carrying of a concealed handgun outside the home.

Hochul, who called the legislature into special session Thursday to address the issue, said she quickly signed the bill into law after it passed.

“I just signed a new law to keep New Yorkers safe – even in the face of a monumental setback from the Supreme Court,” she said in a tweet who thanked lawmakers for their “quick work and collaboration in passing these critical gun safety reforms.”

Lawmakers have hammered the final text of the invoice Thursday and put the bill to a vote on Friday after a debate – drawing criticism from Republicans over the short deadline. The state Senate passed the bill 43-20 Friday in a party online vote, and the state Assembly passed the legislation Friday night 91-51.

The new law establishes a strict licensing process for obtaining a concealed carry permit and a list of locations deemed ‘sensitive’ – including Times Square – where possession of firearms will be illegal, according to the legislation. . Other areas defined as sensitive include government-owned buildings, schools, healthcare facilities, places of worship and public transportation. People who carry a gun in a prohibited place could be charged with a crime under the law.

At a press conference earlier Friday in Albany, Hochul shared the impetus behind the legislation and some of its details.

“With the stroke of a pen, (the Supreme Court) removed longstanding limitations we could use in New York State to make smart decisions about who should be allowed to carry a gun,” Hochul said. . “We believe gun laws like these have made New York City safer.”

The law enacts a strict authorization process for concealed carry licenses. It requires background checks for ammunition sales, a policy that Hochul says is not intended to focus on legitimate gun owners.

Under the law, gun owners will be required to store firearms in secure places in their residences if minors under the age of 18 reside in the home – an increase from the age of 16 years previously established.

Democratic leaders have said they expect gun advocates to challenge the legislation in court – but they believe the bill’s wording will hold up.

New York State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins ​​told a press conference Friday that lawmakers carefully crafted the language after the Supreme Court ruling.

“We wanted to make sure that our authorization process would be able to withstand scrutiny, and the technical aspects took a long time. But we believe we are providing New York, again, an opportunity to not only be able to have their carry concealed, but also to bring New Yorkers to safety,” Stewart-Cousins ​​said.

Last week, the Supreme Court struck down New York’s gun law that required a resident to obtain a license to carry a concealed pistol or revolver in public and demonstrate that ‘legitimate cause’ existed for the permit.

Applicants had to demonstrate a “real and articulate” need for self-defense, as opposed to a “speculative or specious” need.

Following the Supreme Court’s decision, Hochul called it “shocking” and “frightening in its scope about how they are setting back this nation and our ability to protect our citizens.”

She added that it was “particularly painful” that the decision “is being made at this time, when we are still dealing with families who suffer from the mass shootings that took place – death, their children and grandchildren. beloved”.

In May, a gunman opened fire at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, in a predominantly black neighborhood, killing 10 people in a shooting that authorities said was a racist hate crime.

The governor called state lawmakers back to a special session this week to pass gun legislation.

Last month, Hochul signed a legislative package to tighten state gun lawsincluding a law raising the minimum age to buy a semi-automatic rifle to 21.

This headline and story were updated with additional details on Friday.

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CNN’s Mirna Alsharif contributed to this report.

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