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Ellenville considers ban on guns

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Albany/HV: Ellenville considers ban on guns
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The Mayor of Ellenville is looking to possibly ban residents from owning guns. His idea has sparked a fired debate in the tiny village and people living far beyond. The mayor spoke with YNN's Elaina Athans and explained why he's pushing for this progressive ban.

ELLENVILLE, N.Y. -- A right to bear arms could be ending in Ellenville. The mayor doesn't want to wait for the federal government. Instead, he wants to change the local laws. One idea is to ban residents from owning handguns, assault and semi-automatic weapons.

"If tomorrow we passed a ban on handguns, there’s no question there'd be issues," said Ellenville Mayor Jeff Kaplan.

The proposal comes in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. The mayor says it's just way too easy to get weapons and people can be careless about keeping them secure.

"Our belief, under home rule, we have an absolute right to safe guard our citizenry," said Kaplan.

Monell Custom Guns in Pine Bush is the closest gun shop to Ellenville. Owner William Monell says that he rarely sees Ellenville residents come into his store and make purchases.

"Taking away guns is not the answer to this problem," said Monell.

At least one Ellenville resident agrees that a ban will do little to deter people from owning a pistol.

"If they want them, they’re going to get them no matter what," said Rich Rzekonski.

There are others who think this is exactly what needs to be done after so much carnage in Connecticut.

"Kids out here, they’re not all in the right place," said Damaris Rios.

"Anything to do to get rid of some of the guns will make it safer," said Earl Dickman.

The village would need to get permission from the state in order for Ellenville to enforce a ban. The proposal will be discussed at a special meeting Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at Village Hall where residents are sure to come up and voice their opinions. The police chief says one angered resident called the station warning he'd show up the meeting with a gun by his side.

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