ALBANY – There is a major gap between how government and law enforcement treat different kinds of potential threats against the civilian populace.
That’s according to Sen. Cathy Young (R-Olean), who said that in the wake of yet another mass shooting in Florida, a coalition of New York State Senators have introduced legislation that seeks to remedy the problem by treating mass shootings as acts of terrorism.
In a media release, Senator Young said the legislation would help close any potential reporting gaps to ensure that an individual who is deemed a possible threat by tips or local police investigation is properly dealt with. That includes when an individual threatens to conduct a mass shooting.
Sen. Young said that by classifying mass shootings as ‘terrorism’ – it would empower the federal and state intelligence agencies to work to prevent a crime from happening.
The bill also codifies the New York State Intelligence Center, a federally authorized intelligence gathering partnership between the FBI, CIA, State Police, Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services and local policing agencies, and adds a mandate for the Intelligence Center to prevent mass shootings.
The proposed legislation would reference mass shootings in the statute describing the acts of terrorism.
The bill clarifies that a school, house of worship or business could be considered a “civilian population” when a terrorist discharges or attempts to affect the conduct of such areas by discharging a weapon with the intent to cause harm.