Sen. Chuck Schumer on Sunday pushed the federal government to give New York at least $1.5 billion to help get illegal guns off the streets.
The Democrat Senate majority leader said the new Interstate Task Force on Illegal Guns, spearheaded by Gov. Kathy Hochul, will only work if the feds and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms has the resources to “choke off crime.”
“The ABCs of beating back the scourge of gun violence depends on three federal letters: A, T and F,” he said at a press conference in Manhattan.
The task force with representation from more than 50 groups across New York and neighboring states was announced last Sunday, a day after two NYPD officers were shot with a stolen firearm and later died. The goal, politicians have said, is to take on gun trafficking and traffickers by jamming the pipeline, and the group will focus resources on data-sharing, crime gun tracing and intel gathering.
“I am pushing for $1.5 billion dollars in federal funds for the agency, so they can help with this work and do much more at the national level,” the senator said. “Without the $1.5 billion … these plans will not have their full impact, and we need full impact to address the flow of these crime guns in our communities and across our state.”
Schumer plans to secure the federal money during Senate negotiations this week, saying on Sunday that the issue is on his “front-burner.”
Mayor Eric Adams launched a new plainclothes NYPD unit aimed at curbing gun violence in the city. It is a revamped version of the anti-crime unit disbanded in 2020 following allegations of widespread abuse and profiling.
Adams has promised to fire officers for misconduct, warning them Sunday, “If you don’t follow the law, you’re not going to serve in my police department.”