Republicans in the New York state Senate on Thursday called for the approval of a package of bills meant to aid victims of crime and halt the rise of violent crime in the state.
The bills come amid growing concerns over shootings in cities across the state and would seek to turn back aspects of the criminal justice law changes approved in recent years.
The bills include expanding bail provisions to include hate crimes and a strengthening of domestic violence laws. Another bill would have repeat offenders qualify for bail, while Republicans also want to criminalize anti-Semisitim under the state's human rights law.
The GOP lawmakers also want to fully reverse the changes to bail and discovery law changes while also boost penalties for crimes committed on the property of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
The bills also come as Gov. Andrew Cuomo this month declared a state of emergency to combat gun violence in New York. Cuomo on Wednesday met with Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, the Democratic nominee for mayor in New York City, and community leaders to discuss the issue.
"If this wave of violence truly is an emergency, as the governor recently announced, we must get back to the basics of public safety," said Senate Minority Leader Robert Ortt. "That begins by reversing out-of-whack priorities that favor criminals over law-abiding New Yorkers. I am proud to stand with my colleagues in support of our continued initiatives to restore common-sense and public safety in New York.”