A new law in New York has gun manufacturers and dealers on edge.
“They’re running contrary to the federal government,” said Upstate Guns and Ammo owner, Craig Serefini. “And they’re contrary to common sense.”
While declaring a disaster emergency on gun violence last month, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation that could hold the gun industry responsible when crimes are committed. “We went from one epidemic to another epidemic,” Cuomo said. “We went from COVID to the epidemic of gun violence.”
Under the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act enacted during the George W. Bush administration, the industry is immune to liability.
But if state laws regarding sales and marketing are broken by gun manufacturers or dealers, they could now be held liable under this new state law.
What You Need To Know
- Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation that could hold the gun industry responsible when crimes are committed
- Under the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, enacted during the George W. Bush administration, the industry is immune to such liability
- If state laws regarding sales and marketing are broken by gun manufacturers or dealers, they could be held liable with this new state law
“That makes a lot of these guys think twice about doing business with New York,” said Serefini.
He believes there will be adverse effects.
“Drive either insurance, or it’s drive the industry as a whole out, because they can’t afford to operate,” he said. Serefini views it as an assault on a law-abiding industry that will deter dealers like him from performing background checks on private transactions.
“It’s going to force people who wish to sell or transfer a firearm into a different route, which maybe isn’t going to be legal,” he said.
But gun control advocates are applauding the first-in-the-nation measure that requires the industry to implement protocols to prevent lawful products from being possessed, used or marketed for unlawful reasons.
“Only industry in the United States of America immune from lawsuits are the gun manufacturers, thanks to George Bush and the NRA,” Cuomo said.
Back in Schenectady, Serefini is anticipating legal challenges to the new law.
“I look at it as a way for the governor to regulate the sales of firearms to the individual without actually saying that he is doing so,” he said.