Assemblymember Karen McMahon (D-Amherst/Pendleton) announced that several bills she helped pass earlier this year to combat gun violence have been signed into law by Governor Hochul.
“On top of the trauma the COVID-19 pandemic has inflicted over the past year and a half, we’ve also seen a troubling rise in gun violence in many communities across the state and country,” McMahon said. “Gun-related crimes have left many families devastated in the wake of horrific violence. As a longtime advocate for responsible gun ownership, I helped pass comprehensive, common sense gun safety measures to help improve public safety. These new laws represent a strong step forward for our communities.”
The newly signed laws include the Scott J. Beigel Unfinished Receiver Act, which bans the possession and sale of unfinished firearm frames and receivers (Ch. 519 of 2021). By constructing a firearm from these components, individuals have been able to circumvent background checks and create untraceable, semi-automatic weapons. This law was named in memory of Scott J. Beigel, a New York native who was killed in the 2018 Parkland shooting.
Another measure prohibits the possession of ghost guns – weapons made from untraceable gun components (Ch. 520 of 2021). These new laws exclusively target illegal firearms, not law-abiding gun owners, and will help combat gun violence in our communities, noted McMahon.
Finally, a new law will ban the manufacture or sale of firearms that are disguised as toy guns (Ch. 518 of 2021). Tragically, McMahon noted, many gun accidents happen when children mistake these real weapons for toys.
“An effective gun law is one that saves lives,” McMahon said. “These new measures are an important step in the right direction and will help keep our families safe.”
This new legislation builds on previous laws that Assemblymember McMahon helped pass, such as allowing courts to prohibit individuals who are a threat to themselves or others from having a firearm and barring people convicted of domestic violence crimes from owning firearms (Ch.19 of 2019; Ch. 60 of 2018).