With budget discussion ongoing in Albany, Senator Joseph Griffo join WIBX First News with Keeler in the Morning to provide an update on the negotiations:Gun control in New York

There are a lot of things that we need to look at from a societal perspective

The mental health health system too, in my opinion is being neglected.

because K9's are since an intregal part of the police unit and compliment.We want to ensure to provide protections for the K9 Units, also.

The bill would have killing of the animal become a felony, right now its a misdemeanor, Griffo said, adding the Senate has unanimously passed the legislation in the past, but no vote was held in the Assembly.

''We just think its important, there are provisions in law that do that for dogs that assist the disable, for instance for seeing-eye dogs. If you killed a seeing eye dog, that would be a felony.''

Even before the tragic incident in Herkimer we had planned on doing something with this, Griffo said, adding service animals ''should be offered the same type of treatment and coverage.

''I think there's some chance now [to pass in both houses], because, unfortunately, when you have high profile crimes and tragedies like the one [in Herkimer], it galvanizes support.''

Keeler, ''I can't imagine that someone in that situation, where you have a weapon and you're 'on-attack', I can't image they're thinking about any law.''

I absolutely agree, but we want to put those protections in place because there might be other incidents where somebody does something and says, 'If I try to hurt kill the animal, there is a significant consequence to that action.'''


''The bill has been introduced in the Assembly by Assemblyman [Joeseph] Morelle, who's now the majority leader, and that's a significant step. And, I believe they have 62 co-sponsors already, Griffo said.''

The Governor has kinda hemmed and hawed on the issue recently. At first he indicated he was supportive, now he's said he'd like to see more studies. I'm not sure why but we can provide that to him. And, the [Assembly] Speaker has said it's inevitable,'' Griffo said.


Do you think the further you get away from Central New York, the less this gun issue means to people?

''I think it's a matter of philosophy and geography. In the large urban centers you see more support for it. Than a philosophic issue upstate.

But, Griffo said the bill didn't strike a balance.

Office of Joseph Griffo ny.senate.gov

''However, the Governor didn't do anything illegal as some people are proposing. We just don't agree with him. The use of the message of necessity in option within his means, we just felt that he shouldn't have used. We should have had more discussion and debate..."

The Republican senator also said he don't think the law would be repealed, unless it happened through the courts.

What drives the multiple shootings incidents we are hearing more and more about?

''I think it's the mental health system. We need to have of quicker detection, diagnosis and treatment options, when we recognize there a lot of people dealing with mental illness. And, it may require...more institutionalization,'', saying he didn't think that it most the popular opinion, adding, ''instead of closing some of these type of facilities, we should be using them in a different way. A guy like [Adam] Lanza in Connecticut should not have been home, he should have been institutionalized.''

Minimum Wage

  • ''What we're trying to do is mitigate it, phasing it in over three years and offering tax credits to those who hire people under 20. I think some form of a minimum wage increase will be included in the budget.''

AHL in Utica

  • ''Good idea. i think they're all willing to cooperate and have a co-location at the AUD, with the outstanding college program at UC and the AHL. I think it will be good for the economy, more activity is a good thing, as long as everyone works together.''