This post is reproduced from the Liberty Coalition blog.
Earlier this year, Terry Bernardo became the self-declared local spokesperson for the anti-SAFE Act group. The SAFE Act was passed by the New York State Legislature in January 2013 and became one of the most stringent anti-gun laws in the country following the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. The SAFE Act bans possession of “high capacity” magazines and restricts to seven the number of rounds that may be loaded into a magazine, among other restrictions.
The controversial law has many opposed to it – me included – but given that elected officials always need to do something rather than nothing even if what they do will not address the problem, they passed the SAFE Act in January.
You may recall that I chastised Bernardo and the County Legislature for the dog and pony show they put on at taxpayers’ expense back in February (after the SAFE Act was passed) to host the regular monthly legislative session at UPAC (Ulster Performing Arts Center) in Kingston. Bernardo’s rationale was that a lot of people wanted to come out and comment on a law that the New York State Legislature already passed (you’re following me here, right?). Since UPAC is not a county owned building, the County Legislature had to pay to use the facility so all the residents for and against the SAFE Act could come out and voice their opinions on a law over which the County Legislature has no control.
I recently obtained a copy of the invoice for the use of UPAC that night and it cost the taxpayers of Ulster County $1,200 for the gripe fest about an existing law. Now I wouldn’t have any problem with spending the money IF the Ulster County Legislature had the jurisdiction to pass or repeal the law or if they had any control whatsoever over legislation passed by the State Legislature, but this was nothing more than a headline grabbing initiative by both Bernardos. Think I’m wrong? Go ahead and ask around. Paying $1,200 for our Legislature to send a Memorializing Resolution up to Albany is total bull. Not that I didn’t say this before.
Those who watch the Bernardo Show regularly – like I do – may have also seen a photo op shot of Terry cozying up to Governor Cuomo while up in Albany for the NYSAC meeting. It was only a week later that she was standing in front of the Capitol with her anti-SAFE Act friends shouting “Cuomo’s got to go!” So which one is it? Are you for or against Cuomo?
Now here’s the new problem for Bernardo – word on the street is that the anti-SAFE Act people are spreading the word and handing out fliers instructing all of their supporters to vote no for ALL statewide ballot propositions. This includes Proposition 1 which authorizes up to seven casinos, one of which is slated for the Town of Wawarsing at the former Nevele site, which falls within Bernardo’s legislative district.
So what’s in the Bernardo playbook now? Distribute some of those anti-SAFE Act fliers calling for supporters to “stick it to the politicians” or vote in favor of Proposition 1 to support her constituents?
Robin Vaccai, Spokesperson