Senate Co-Leader Klein allocates $2.5 million for statewide gun offense and violent felony offender registry in budget resolution

Klein’s allocation would fund public online database promoted by Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. in another step by Bronx elected officials to combat gun violence

BRONX, NY – State Senate Co-Leader Jeff Klein appropriated $2.5 million in the New York State Senate’s one house budget resolution to create a statewide gun offense and violent felony offender registry which would provide citizens with crucial information on where gun-toting lawbreakers live.

The statewide registry, pitched by Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. in his 2013 State of the Borough, would be modeled on a ground-breaking registry system used by the NYPD since 2006. It’s the first major step towards allocating the funds this year.

“Eliminating gun violence from our neighborhoods is one of my top priorities. I am proud to lead the charge for new state funding that would create a statewide registry and give us another tool to track and deter violent gun crimes,” said Senator Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester.) “This statewide registry will help identify those who use guns for illegal purposes and make sure communities have the information they need to keep our streets safe.”

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. pitched the idea last year as a way to focus on those who illegally use guns that plague city streets. The allocation brings his vision one step closer to fruition.

“I applaud State Senator Klein for his continued commitment to a statewide felony gun offender registry. A statewide gun offender registry will shine a light on gun criminals, making our streets safer while providing individuals and families with the tools they need to help keep their communities free of crime. I am proud to work with State Senator Klein on this legislation, and I look forward to it becoming law. More information on felony gun offenders can only make us safer,” Borough President Diaz said.

Back in 2006, the NYPD implemented a registry and defendants convicted of gun felony crimes must register, in person, their home addresses every six months for four years after their release from prison. The violent criminals are also required to immediately notify the police if they move in between their required notification periods. In 2012, 11 offenders were arrested for noncompliance.

The NYPD registry system is so effective that it was copied by cities like Baltimore, Chicago and Washington D.C.

Illegal gun violence is a crime with a high recidivism rate. Statistically, 30 percent of all shootings across the city were committed by a small group of offenders who belong to youth gangs. Studies reveal that gun felons were more likely to be rearrested compared to other felons with 42 percent arrested post released compared to 25 percent of other felons. Gun felons were also four times as likely to commit homicide after being released from prison.

Bronx legislators support the statewide registry that will target the most violent gun felons across the state.

“We must use every tool possible to get guns off the street and out of the hands of criminals,” said Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz (D-Bronx.) This registry will strengthen our ability to protect the people of New York, and I am proud to be a sponsor of this important initiative.”

“Senator Klein’s registry will serve to strengthen New York State’s gun law and it creates safer neighborhoods,” said Assemblyman Carl Heastie (D-Bronx.) “Tragically, gun violence has intruded in every aspect of our lives. This initiative supports my bill, the Firearm Registration Act. It requires that an offender convicted of unlawful possession of a firearm/gun register their names and their pertinent information and other distinguishing characteristics. For the future of our children, we need to keep guns off our streets.”