Monroe County, N.Y. --- It’s become a statewide if not a national debate. Should the names and addresses of people owning pistol permits be a matter of public record?
Currently in New York State that information is a public record. But last month a Lower Hudson Valley newspaper, The Journal News, published that information in a mapping program online for permit owners living in Rockland and Westchester counties.
This week Putnam County leaders publicly denied the request by that newspaper.
"I'm going to take care of the people of Putnam County,” Putnam County Clerk Dennis Sant said at a press conference. “That is what I'm going to do.”
For Ken Mathison of S.C.O.P.E. (the Shooter’s Committee On Public Education) that is a welcome response and one he and others have advocated on behalf of for many years.
"It's private information, it shouldn't be made public," Mathison argues. "It's not only my safety but the safety of the rest of the public. If you don't know who has the guns you're not going to take a big chance of breaking into somebody's house."
Others are also weighing when asked if pistol permit information should remain public.
"No, not at all,” Bill Clagg of Rochester said. “It should be private it shouldn't be out there for anybody to access."
"I would agree with him, I don't think it's right,” John of Henrietta said. “I don't own a gun myself but I don't think you should be publishing the names it's just not right."