Proposal would require NY gun owners to purchase liability insurance

February 28, 2017 11:40 PM

"Having safeguards in place is just common sense. It's just common sense."

Lentory Johnson's son Johnny "J.R." Johnson was killed with a stolen gun. He was one of the three victims killed in the Genesee Street mass shooting.

A proposal now under debate in the Insurance Committee in the state Assembly, if approved, could require gun owners to purchase $250,000 in liability insurance. The insurance would cover any negligent acts involving the use of the gun should it be stolen or lost.

"So you tell me, how is this that we can be living 'in the United States of America,' but people are walking around like they're in Syria or some other third world country and these kind of weapons are on our streets."

The proposal is aimed at making gun owners accountable when they don't safeguard their firearms. Failure to maintain the insurance would result in the immediate revocation of the gun permit.

But this proposal is not sitting well with all lawmakers. Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb had this to say when I asked him his thoughts about this proposal when it was initially proposed some time ago.

Brian Kolb, Assembly Minority Leader: I think it's indefensible and irresponsible to even consider a piece of legislation like this, dealing with the very folks, they are the law abidiing citizens in our state.

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Kolb says it unfairly punishes law abiding gun owners. "This is one more cost, one more burden because the rest of our activities are ineffectual at best in dealing with this issue."


Lynette Adams

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