During the public comments portion of Tuesday’s Orangetown Town Council meeting, Richard Molloy of Pearl River asked the board to condemn The Journal News for publishing a map of legally licensed pistol permit holders in Rockland and Westchester counties last month.
Molloy noted that a group of Rockland County Legislators and other elected officials around the county had already passed similar condemnations against the newspaper for publishing the map. Supervisor Andy Stewart said the board hadn’t publicly talked about the issue at a meeting and Councilman Paul Valentine made a motion to pass the resolution.
“These people are not criminals,” Valentine said. “They are people who did the right thing and went and got their permits.”
Councilman Denis Troy said he thought the map was irresponsible, which Councilman Thomas Diviny agreed with. The board voted to pass the resolution 4-0 with Stewart abstaining. He said he wanted to look more into possible repercussions from publishing the map before making a decision on it.
One issue that has come up since the map was published is that included on it are law enforcement officers who might not have wanted their names and addresses out in the open. Stewart asked Orangetown Police Chief Kevin Nulty for his perspective on the map.
“The thing that got me when I first looked at it was I looked at a street and I said, ‘Oh my god, that guy’s dead.’ Twenty-five percent of that information, which is public information, is incorrect on that website. So if you think that somebody lives in a house, they don’t necessarily live in that house anymore,” Nulty said.
“These are law-abiding citizens. I think The Journal News went overboard on this, certainly.”
The resolution as written up during new business at Tuesday’s meeting by Councilman Thomas Morr and looked over by the other board members. The resolution stated that the map was “irresponsible, unnecessary and potentially dangerous.”