LEGISLATION IS PENDING TO SET THE MINIMUM AGE FOR JUVENILES TO USE RIFLES AND SHOTGUNS ON SHOOTING RANGES AT TEN YEARS OF AGE.
Assembly bill A1623 sponsored by Assemblyman William Magee and Senate bill S991 sponsored by Senator Michael Ranzenhofer are currently pending in their respective houses’ Codes Committees.
The NYSCC strongly supports this change. The proposed bills would set the minimum age at which individuals are permitted to use rifles, shotguns and air guns under supervised conditions at ten. This would bring New York in line with the rest of the nation and permit New York residents age ten and up to receive training and participate in competitive programs designed for this age group.
- Good training is the best single measure that can be taken to further firearms safety. Providing the means and environment for instilling safe handling practices ensures the welfare of everyone.
- The DEC’s five-year deer management plan recommends that the minimum age for big game hunting with a firearm be lowered to twelve. Individuals who are going to be legally hunting should be given training and encouraged to develop the firearms handling skills required for safe hunting before they go afield.
- This change would also allow individuals to participate in national competitive shooting programs developed for this age group. Participation in both local and national sports shooting programs builds character and preserves our heritage. These activities are sponsored not only by shooting sports organizations but by the Boy Scouts, 4H and the American Legion.
This change would bring New York in line with the rest of the nation. All other states allow supervised shooting for individuals 10 or younger. The early training of our youth in the safe and responsible handling of firearms and their participation in sports shooting programs is the foundation of firearms safety.
Please support this legislation by contacting your New York State legislators and urging them to press for passage.
LEGISLATION IS NOW PENDING TO PROHIBIT THE OPERATION OF ALL-TERRAIN VEHICLES IN THE STATE FOREST PRESERVE
Assembly bill A1631 sponsored by Assemblyman Steven Englebright and companion Senate bill S4718 sponsored by Senator Kenneth Lavalle are currently pending in their respective houses’ Tourism, Parks, Arts & Sports Development (A1631) and Environmental Conservation (S4718) committees.
The NYSCC strongly opposes this legislation. The stated purpose of the proposal is to protect sensitive state forest preserve lands from damage from illegal ATV operation. This is a red herring; the underlying objective is clearly to prohibit all ATV operation by the public, regardless of purpose or impact.
This has less to do with the well-being of the forest preserves and more to do with the objection of a self-selected consortium to an activity of which they personally do not approve.
- Soundly managed ATV access allows members of the public to enjoy legitimate entree to the forest preserve which would otherwise be inaccessible to them. Appropriate operating practices do not pose any ecological threat to the future of the preserve.
- The well-being of the preserve can be effectively protected via the regulatory process. The development process for Unit Management Plans provides ample opportunity for both the public and the state’s professional staff to participate in the planning process.
- If law enforcement does not have adequate fiscal or statutory resources to deal with illegal ATV operations, that is the problem that should be addressed. The approach offered by this legislation is akin to dealing with a rise in highway traffic violations by shutting down the Thruway!
Please express your opposition to this legislation by contacting your New York State legislators and urging them to work for its defeat.
More information can be found in the Council’s Memorandum in Opposition located on our website www.nyscc.com
Call, write, email or stop in today. The most effective voice with any legislator is that of a voting constituent – particularly one with friends that vote! And don’t forget to tell those friends!