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Warrior House of WNY Gun Raffle/Chinese Auction & Spaghetti Dinner is April 7 at Ascension Parish Hall

By Billie Owens

The Warrior House of Western NY Gun Raffle/Chinese Auction and Spaghetti Dinner will be held starting at 1 p.m. on Satruday, April 7, at Ascension Parish Hall. It is located at 17 Sumner St., Batavia (formerly the Sacred Heart Social Center).

Must be 18 to win prizes and must be able to pass NICS check. Warrior House is not responsible for NICS outcome.

For more information, contact Edward Spence at (716) 560-0697.

The event will last until all prizes are awarded.

They are:

1) Stevens 301 20 ga. shotgun

2) $75 cash

3) Savage A22, 22 long rifle

4) Mossberg 500 20 ga.

5) $100 cash

6) Savage 93-22 mag

7) $125 cash

8) Thompson Center Triumph 50 cal.

9) Winchester 94 Trooper 100 anniversary 30/30

10) $150 cash

11) Springfield Armory M1A 308 Winchester

12) Windjm AR-15 .223/5.56

13) Chiappa M19 9 mm carbine

14) $200 cash

15) Savage Axis II 30.06

As process starts, local pistol permit holders raise concerns about recertification process

By Howard B. Owens

The newly implemented pistol permit recertification process in New York has guns owners worried about what the state is up to and more than a dozen gun owners attended Tuesday's Public Service Committee Meeting to hear County Clerk Michael Cianfrini update the legislature on the county's role in the process.

In short, the county has no role.

This is a State Police process, Cianfrini said.

Recertification requires gun owners with pistol permits acquired before Jan. 15, 2013 to fill out a form with information about themselves and their pistols and submit it to the NYSP (there is an online form for this). For those gun owners required to recertify, they must complete the application before the end of January, 2018.

The recertification requirement was part of the SAFE Act and it's taken the state these past couple of years to come up with a system for implementing it.

Gun owners don't trust the state or the process, said Bill Fox, president of Genesee County SCOPE (Shooters Commitee on Political Education).

"I don't trust them for the simple reason there is no reason to trust them," Fox said.

For one thing, Fox said it doesn't seem like the state is entirely transparent about the recertification process. He alleges there is a secret mental health database the state isn't disclosing that can be used to deny recertification.

The other criteria the state might use to deny recertification isn't clear, he said.

And if a gun owner is denied recertification, he said, the state can use that denial as an excuse to take all of a person's long guns as well.

"That's written right into the law," Fox said.

Fox indicated it would actually be better if recertificate was handled at the county level.

"That way, if there was a problem, I could just go into Mike and straighten it out," he said.

The process is easier and more transparent in Pennsylvania, Fox said.

Cianfrini said the only role for the county is in assisting gun owners in obtaining records and making sure they're accurate to help make the recertification process easier for the gun owner.

Jankowski brings home a first-place award in three-gun shooting competition

By Howard B. Owens

Former Batavia PD officer Eugene Jankowski had another successful showing at a gun competition, finishing in the top 25 percent out of 202 competitors and winning 1st Place in the senior tactical optics division.

The competition, the 2013 Blue Ridge Mountain Three-Gun Championship, was held last week  at the Rockcastle Shooting Center in Park City, Ky.

Competitors shot nine stages of fire in natural terrain over three days.  

All stages required the use of a modern sporting rifle, semi-auto shotgun and semi-auto handgun.  The targets were required to be engaged from awkward shooting locations and positions. Targets ranged from 3 to 425 yards for the rifle, 3-70 yards for the pistol and 10-75 yards for the shotgun.

Jankowski is sponsored by Metal Spinning Targets in Le Roy, CMC Triggers in Fort Worth, Texas, Wolf Gunsprings and Offhaus Farms in Batavia.

Forms now available to opt-out of public disclosure of pistol permits

By Howard B. Owens

Press release:

On January 15, 2013, New York State passed new legislation known as the “NY SAFE ACT”– New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act.

The NY SAFE ACT includes the ability for pistol permit holders to "Opt-Out." This means pistol permit holders can request that their information be kept private and confidential.

The NYSAFE Act protects the privacy of pistol license holders by permitting them to notify a county clerk that they do not wish for their information to be released publicly.

Current licensees and new applicants may make this notification to their licensing officer using the NYS Firearms License Request for Public Records Exemption form which was approved by the Superintendent of the New York State Police.

In order for pistol permit holders to "Opt-Out" and have their information kept private, the form needs to be completed in its entirety and the original needs to be mailed or dropped off to your local county clerk’s office. The form is available at your local county clerk’s office and on their Web sites. We are also encouraging our town offices and local gun dealers to make the form available at their place of businesses, so you can also check there to see if they have the form available.

Genesee County Clerk Don M. Read
County Building #1
PO BOX 379
15 Main St.
Batavia, NY 14020-0379
(585) 344-2550, ext. 2243
Fax: (585) 344-8521

Orleans County Clerk Karen Lake-Maynard
3 S. Main St., Suite 1
Courthouse Square
Albion, NY 14411
Phone: (585) 589-5334
Fax: (585) 589-0181

Wyoming County Clerk Rhonda Pierce
143 N. Main St.
Warsaw, NY 14569
(585) 786-8810
(585) 786-3703

Sheriff Maha issues statement on passage of SAFE Act

By Howard B. Owens

From Sheriff Gary Maha:

I have been receiving numerous inquiries in reference to what is the New York State Sheriffs' position with regard to the NY SAFE Act.

Fifty-two of the 58 Sheriffs met during our annual winter conference last week in Albany, NY, and discussed this legislation at length. There are a number of provisions in the law that the Sheriffs find to be helpful to law enforcement and to our citizens. However, there are also a number of provisions which cause us concern, and which we think should be revisited by the Governor and State Legislature. The Sheriffs of New York State are willing to work with the Governor and State Legislature as revisions and additions to the NY SAFE Act are considered.

Attached is the position statement of the New York State Sheriffs with regard to the NY SAFE Act. This position statement was sent to the Governor and State Legislative leaders.

Click here to read the position statement (PDF).

Corfu resident among those arrested in statewide sting operation at gun shows

By Howard B. Owens

A Corfu resident, William Smith, is among 10 people arrested statewide following an investigation into allegedly illegal gun sales at gun shows throughout the state.

Among the shows investigators visited during the investigation was one in Alexander on June 19.

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman initiated the sting operation to look for people willing to sell guns without the required background check.

According to officials, investigators explicity stated they needed a gun but could not pass a background check.

From the press release:

"The illegal sale of guns at gun shows endangers the public by giving felons, terrorists and the dangerously mentally ill an open and anonymous marketplace to buy guns without a background check. Our investigators found a blatant disregard for the law where sellers made the conscious decision to sell deadly weapons to individuals who admitted they would not pass a background check," said Attorney General Schneiderman.

"Operation Background Bust not only exposed major flaws in the gun show laws but also proved how ‘off the books’ operations jeopardize public safety by making it easy for guns to fall into the wrong hands. In addition to filing criminal charges against the sellers, and demanding that the gun show operators cease and desist from engaging in illegal practices, my office plans to work with the legislature to hold gun show operators liable when guns are sold at their gun shows without the required background check."

Click here for the full press release from the AG's office.

Genesee County residents seeking more guns and permits in recent months

By Howard B. Owens

Mike Barrett, owner of Barrett's Marine and Sporting Supply, says he's seeing more first-time gun buyers in his store these days, and County Clerk Don Read reports that the most recent gun permit class had 42 people in it.

The increase in local gun ownership matches a national trend.

"I don't think it's one element that is behind the increase," Read said. "It's everything put together."

And everything means fears of new federal and state legislation restricting gun and ammo sales, the recession and increases in crime, and the usual reason -- newfound interest in hunting and target shooting.

Whatever the cause, Barrett said distributors' warehouses are bare and it's more difficult to get inventory.

Barrett and his staff where a little upset with Read this afternoon, after hearing that Read blamed the increase of permits on "scare tactics" by the NRA and other gun advocates. Conservative commentators have been raising concerns about President Obama's anti-gun positions and legislation being introduced at both the state and federal levels.

"I heard that (Read's comments) today and almost blew a gasket," Barrett said. "A lot of people are down playing what's going on and it's nothing to be played down. I don't say that just because I'm a business man  There is a train coming down."

Barrett handed over information on five state bills that would limit gun ownership, make it harder if not impossible to buy certain kind of guns and obtain ammunition.

Anti-gun legislation has been introduced before and didn't pass. Read said he thinks this round of legislation isn't likely to pass either.

"I don't attribute it to scare tactics, but there is an aspect that people are afraid there will be more restrictions," Read said. "Personally, I don't see that happening, but often perception of an issue is more important than reality."

The surge in gun permits goes beyond the specter of stricter legislation, Barrett said. The recession is also driving concerns about a rise in crime and the need for self protection.

A member of his staff, Jack Taylor, said a 70-year-old woman walked out of the store 20 minutes earlier with her first rifle.

"She bought it for target practice and to keep around the house," Taylor said.

Read tells a similar story: "We just had a lady in, a well-known lady, who is retired now and her husband enjoys target practice and she wanted to be able to enjoy it with him."

Asked about more gun ownership in Genesee County, Sheriff Gary Maha responded:

"Those persons obtaining gun permits are law-abiding citizens and are not
a concern to law enforcement.  I believe in the Second Amendment -- 'the right to bear arms.' It is the illegal guns and illegally obtained guns that I am concerned about."

For more information on the proposed legislation in New York, visit the SCOPE Web site.

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