Serrano Bill to Strengthen Gun Control in NY State Parks Passes Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks & Recreation Committee

José M. Serrano

June 4, 2009

June 4, 2009

Albany, NY – Senator José M. Serrano moved quickly to ensure safety at state parks, in the wake of a reckless pro-gun provision that moved through Congress last month.

The provision, tucked into a bill on credit card rules, allows park visitors to carry concealed weapons in national parks unless otherwise prohibited by state law.

The Serrano bill (S.4753) would expressly ban concealed weapons in state parks, and thus ban them in New York’s national parks as well. On Thursday, it passed the Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks & Recreation Committee – chaired by the Senator – and will now proceed to the Codes Committee.

“State parks are safe havens for New York families, and we intend to keep them that way,” said Senator Serrano.

“The gun lobby cannot expect to ram guns into New York parks the very same way it rams language into federal legislation. My colleagues and I will work tirelessly to strengthen laws and close loopholes.”

The United States registers more than 30,000 gun deaths per year. “If anyone thinks that easing gun control, especially in places with so many children and families, is going to reduce violence: they are dead wrong,” said the Senator.

He added that state parks are not confined to sparsley populated areas.

“I am fortunate to represent Roberto Clemente State Park, located in the West Bronx portion of my district,” said the Senator. “Parents and community leaders made tremendous strides to reduce crime in recent years. The last thing they need is a refuge for guns in their backyard.”