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Suffolk Notebook: New Gun Safety Measure Approved

Legislature unanimously backs law that allows cops to seize weapons from involuntary psychiatric patients.

The Suffolk County Legislature this past week unanimously approved a new gun safety control measure aimed at keeping weapons out of the hands of involuntary psychiatric patients. 

The measure, sponsored by Legis. Kara Hahn, D-Setauket, mandates law enforcement officials crosscheck the names and addresses of individuals transported to Stony Brook University's Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program against the county's pistol license registries.

"In the days following all mass shootings there is always a search for missed warning signs," Hahn said. "An involuntary transport to a psychiatric emergency room should be a red flag of an individual's mental state. My goal is to never have to look back following a tragedy and ask 'how this warning or that red flag was missed.'" 

In January, New York State adopted the mental health provisions of the NY Safe Act of 2013, which allows for cross checking potentially unstable individuals against a not yet created statewide pistol license database.

The county's legislation takes this one step further by requiring police officers to make immediate referrals to the licensing bureau. This is already common practice in handling domestic violence-related calls. 

"When Legislator Hahn brought this idea to my attention, I implemented it immediately because it has the potential to save lives," said Edward Weber, Suffolk County's police commissioner. 

The bill will go to Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone for his signature. If signed, the new law will impact the towns of Babylon, Brookhaven, Huntington, Islip and Smithtown. 

• Parks appointment for Bellone's wife withdrawn

The Suffolk legislature has withdrawn a resolution that would make County Executive Steve Bellone's wife, Tracey, an unpaid parks trustee. 

Newsday reported that the motion was withdrawn after the county's attorney discovered Tracey Bellone, the Town of Babylon's deputy parks commissioner, could not serve in the unpaid position because a county code prohibits state or town officials from becoming a parks appointee. 

The legislature is expected to introduce a bill that would amend the county code. A resolution to appoint Tracey Bellone as a parks trustee could be filed again after the changes are made. 

Dr Pragmatic April 01, 2013 at 08:31 PM
"Its' not my name, dilweed, just my handle" Well as I said it's apt , you should consider a legal name change to that second part In fact make it your first name & change your second name to OFF To keep this suffolk centric , ever wonder why Shrink & PT Offices among others are littered with dregs of SCPD, Teachers Union , LIRR employees , Postal employees to name a few , begging for that golden retirement ticket ? BTW - Franchi ? LOL Ban Handguns so the next OWS type Shooter from a liberal gun free zone will use a pair of Benelli M4's
knee jerk April 01, 2013 at 09:02 PM
Dr. Ragdick: No, I never wondered about that, perhaps you can enlighten me. As far as the Benelli M4 (Marine Corps rapid fire shotgun, designed to kill rapidly, not for hunting or skeet) that too belongs on a banned list.
Conservative Underground April 01, 2013 at 10:01 PM
Where are the moderators for this site.
Argile April 01, 2013 at 11:03 PM
Yeah, good luck with that.
Conservative Underground April 02, 2013 at 12:40 AM
Too busy watching the Carrie Diaries or Gossip Girl I guess...what a shame.

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