Less than a week after vowing to enact the "the toughest assault weapons ban in the nation," all the while working with state legislatures on making it a reality, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is close to striking a deal with Albany legislators over a wide-reaching gun bill. Citing several sources with knowledge of Cuomo's deal-making, both the Associated Press and The New York Post say the expected bill includes a bevy of new restrictions on the sale and distribution of guns, and gives more authority to law enforcement officials dealing with gun traffickers and the mentally ill. While the details of the assault-weapons ban aspect remain murky — it will expand an existing ban in the state — the multiple other restrictions include:
- A ban on magazines with a capacity higher than 7 rounds. (The current limit is 10 rounds.)
- A law that hands more authority to law enforcement officials over people who "are a threat to themselves and others." This, the AP reports, was a concession extracted by Albany Republicans.
- Harsher punishment for those who smuggle illegal guns into New York State. (This was another aspect of the bill written by New York Senate Republicans.)
- Mandatory background checks for persons buying or selling a rifle or shotgun of any size
One provision that's definitely not on the table is a large-scale confiscation of assault weapons. Per The New York Post:
Cuomo, who pledged in his State of the State last week to pass the toughest gun restrictions in the nation, has, meanwhile, made it clear in private that he isn’t interested in trying to “confiscate’’ the million-plus military-style assault rifles believed to be legally possessed by New Yorkers — despite his controversial suggestion a few weeks ago that such a possibility was on the table.
The New York Times reports that a vote is expected early this week, possibly "as soon as Monday."