How new NYS gun laws impact legal gun owners

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) – New gun control laws, passed during a special session of the legislature, are likely to slow down the process significantly for people looking to legally obtain a pistol permit in New York State. If you already have a concealed carry permit, you’ll have to spend hours and shell out even more cash to keep it.

“In Monroe County, the vast majority, we think close to 95% of our issued pistol permit licenses are carried concealed,” explains County Clerk Jamie Romeo which means the changes the state is making come September impact upwards of 50,000 people in Monroe County alone.

When it’s time for those permit holders to renew, they will have to show proof they’ve taken 16 hours of in-person training including 2 hours of live-fire range training. "We know one of the biggest questions is about the training and the proficiency levels and where should I go get my training done but those are questions that were continuing to work with and wait on the State of New York and State Police as they are going through their processes,” Romeo explains. Romeo says it’s also unclear at this point whether any training classes a person has taken on their own will count toward the requirement.

In addition to the normal paperwork, background check, references, social media check, and now training, new concealed permit applicants will also be required to meet in person with a licensing officer for an interview. There are currently 2,000 people with permits under review and 7 judges in Monroe County who can sign off on licenses. "This is another one [issue] where there is some questions that remain,” Romeo says of how they can be expected to interview each person.

The waiting period on a pistol permit in Monroe County is currently between 9-16 months, these changes are likely to extend that even further, “I don’t foresee any current partner in this pistol permit process being able to say they have the staff and the resources to take this on as we currently stand,” Romeo says. And that of course leads to an obvious question: “If you’ve now made it a two-year process to get your pistol permit have you infringed on the right? That is not a decision for me to make,” Romeo says. “But those are a lot of the questions I think that while I understand the intent in this there’s gonna be a lot of real questions about the implementation of it.”

The Monroe County Clerk is setting up an email list to keep permit holders updated on developments as more guidance is handed down by the State. If you’d like to sign-up, click here.