Sen. Walczyk calls fees for ammunition, firearm background checks 'ridiculous and unconstitutional'
BY JEFF CHUDZINSKI
North Country This Week
Individuals hoping to purchase a firearm or ammunition will soon have to pay for background checks, a move that State Senator Mark Walcyzk says is unconstitutional.
Passed with the Concealed Carry Improvement Act (CCIA) in 2022, fees associated with background checks are set to be implemented on Sept. 13.As part of the new process, firearm dealers will have to register with the state and must submit all background checks to the State Police, who then act as the middle-man and contact the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which is operated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, on the dealer’s behalf.
The new procedures are planned to go into effect on Sept. 13, at which time federal firearms dealers will be unable to conduct background checks directly through the NICS system as they have since its inception.
All fees must be paid prior to the state contacting NICS, according to the State Police website.
Walczyk says the fee structure is “ridiculous and unconstitutional.”
"NICS checks on gun purchases are a common sense way to keep guns out of the hands of criminals. However, Kathy Hochul's ammo tax only penalizes law-abiding firearm owners. This Albany Democrat overreach is going to hurt small gun shops across New York and jobs are going to be lost across the state as a direct result of this policy. Because Democrats continue to scribble over the US Constitution, I've penned a new bill to repeal the ammunition and gun purchase fees.”
Walczyk is co-sponsoring Senator Joe Griffo’s bill, S.2635, that would repeal the changes made by chapter 371 of 2022, which implement the fee scheme.
Other aspects of the CCIA targeted by the bill include provisions that an individual prove “good moral character” when applying for a concealed carry license, as well as “prohibited spaces” restrictions that limit where lawful concealed carry is allowed throughout the state.