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New York passes most comprehensive set of gun reforms since Sandy Hook

New York passes most comprehensive set of gun reforms since Sandy Hook
© UPI Photo

The New York state legislature on Tuesday passed the most comprehensive set of gun control bills in the state since 2013, according to The New York Times

The measures approved included ones to prohibit bump stocks and to bar teachers from carrying guns in schools, the Times reported. Another measure extends the waiting period for individuals who purchase guns and have not passed an instant background check. 

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The state Senate and Assembly passed six bills in total, marking the first time since 2013 that a major gun control package was passed by the state legislature. The legislation that was passed in 2013 occurred just after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Conn., which resulted in more than 25 deaths. 

That package included bills to expand the state's prohibition of assault weapons and tightened certification requirements. 

“Sometimes history irrefutably bears out your actions,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said at a news conference that was attended by a number gun safety advocates. “Today is the next evolution in this ongoing crusade.”

The Times noted that the bills' relatively easy passage in the legislature showcased the impact last November's election is having in the state. Democrats gained a majority in the state Senate for the first time in a decade, giving the party complete control of government. 

The bills passed on Tuesday were approved mostly along partisan lines. No Republican senators voted for a bill that extends the waiting period for completing background checks to 30 days. The waiting period was previously three days.

But some Republican state lawmakers did vote for the proposal that banned bump stocks, which allow a semi-automatic gun to fire in rapid bursts. A bill to establish a gun buyback program also received votes from Republicans. 

The overwhelming majority of lawmakers backed a proposal to give New York regulators the grounds to search mental health records for out-of-state firearms buyers.