Proposed NYS Assembly Bills by Tom Reynolds
Governor Kathy Hochul claims she is open to changes to the state’s failed criminal justice policy. So far, that only includes tweaking language which forces the “least restrictive” bail requirements on those accused of certain serious crimes.
Since virtually every day seems to bring another story of avoidable crime committed by someone freed under Hochul’s new bail laws, we need less talking from lawmakers and more effective action.
On behalf of the minority Republican Party, Assembly Minority Leader Will Barclay has proposed a series of bills designed to restore order and truly make communities safer. They include:
· Restoring Judicial Discretion – Restoring judicial discretion to allow judges the ability to determine whether a violent criminal poses a dangerous threat to the community and can be held without bail.
· Bail for Gun Crimes – Removing all gun crimes from the no-bail list of offenses Democrats established in 2019.
· Increased Penalties on Youth Gun Crimes – Prohibiting the removal of an Adolescent Offender to Family Court where the defendant possessed a loaded firearm.
· Parole Reform – Requiring a unanimous vote of at least three parole commissioners to grant a prisoner early release and allowing a majority vote of the Legislature to remove a commissioner from the Parole Board.
· Three Strikes & You’re In – Authorizing life in prison without parole for persistent violent felony offenders.
· Shooting Into Crowds – Making it a Class B violent felony to fire into a crowded space with the intent to harm.
· Additional 5 Years for Possession – Providing for an additional 5-year term of imprisonment for committing a felony while possessing a loaded firearm.
· Bail for Hate Crimes – Making a hate crime a qualified offense for purposes of bail issuance.
· Paula’s Law – Preventing the parole of anyone who sexually assaults and murders a child under 18 years of age.
· Bail Reform Repeal – Repealing bail reforms and other criminal justice reforms enacted in Chapters 55 and 59 of the Laws of 2019 and Chapter 56 of the Laws of 2020 and restore prior language.
· Risk Assessment – Restoring judicial discretion relating to bail reform, and providing that when the defendant is charged with a felony, the court shall request of the applicable county pretrial services agency that a risk and needs assessment be conducted.
· Obstructing a Police Officer – Making it a felony to intentionally interfere with or inhibit a police officer or peace officer from engaging in the course of performing their official duties, including spitting, throwing or spilling items, liquid or other physical contact.
Unfortunately, since the NY Legislature is over-filled with left wing radicals who are more concerned about criminals than victims, these will probably go nowhere. But, that shouldn’t stop us from publicizing these bills as one of the answers to the crime wave surging through our state. Perhaps that will convince some people that there is a new, rational direction possible, when they vote in 2024.
Another answer to the crime wave, that Hochul opposes, is keeping our guns nearby for self-defense.