Opinion 17-166

As a follow-up to my previous post, the Watertown Daily Times reports, “St. Lawrence County lawmakers cite ethics issues with judges as pistol permit officer in resolution“:

St. Lawrence County lawmakers want the state to grant authority for counties to remove judges as pistol licensing officers. In a resolution passed during the county’s Finance Committee meeting Monday, legislators unanimously passed a resolution urging the county’s state representatives to pass legislation regarding pistol licensure to create uniformity statewide … The resolution states that the legislators have long been concerned with the manner in which the pistol licensing occurs in St. Lawrence County, specifically with respect to the addition of restrictions, and asks state lawmakers, among other things, to grant counties the ability to designate a pistol licensing officer other than a judge … Monday’s resolution came after the Dec. 7 opinion issued by the state Advisory Committee on Judicial Ethics that states “a judge who serves as a firearm licensing officer must not initiate licensing revocation/suspension proceedings … nor conduct one without a prosecuting agency.” …”

There is state legislation designating county sheriff’s as the licensing agent A-6912/S-908, but SLC legislators are not specifically endorsing it.

Here are copies of the resolution and advisory committee opinion in PDF format:

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