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Proposed legislation to ban machetes in NYS

Monday, February 23, 2015   (0 Comments)
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State Senator Tony Avella wants to ban machete possession in New York

Under Avella’s proposal, possessing a machete could lead up to a year in jail. He plans to introduce a bill to establish a ban, which is in response to an incident in July on Long Island where a man hacked a teenager to death.


How do you feel about about the possible ban on machetes, a tool many land surveyors use on a daily basis? Please weigh in on this new proposed legislation.


See full story here as originally posted on


NYSAPLS Update  10:22:41 AM:

We shared the above news story on our Facebook for members to weigh in.  If you’re not on Facebook, here’s a comment from member Tom Cerchiara:


So I wrote that this state senator who according to the news media wanted to ban the use of machetes in NYS. I figured that there was something we were missing. Here is his response. Makes a lot more sense than the way the media reported it.

"Thank you for contacting my office regarding my recent bill that will amend the New York State Penal Law to include a machete within the definition of “Deadly Weapon”. (See

Unfortunately, there has been some confusion in the media that has improperly characterized this bill as a “ban” on machetes. In fact, the bill only includes machetes in the Penal Law definition of a “Deadly Weapon” pursuant to subdivision 12 of Section 10.00. The effect of this definitional change is to mandate that when a person causes physical injury by using a machete and did so either intentionally, recklessly or with criminal negligence they can be charged accordingly pursuant to the Penal Law provisions covering Assault Offenses (Article 120).

I purposely did not include machete in the other “Dangerous Weapons” offense categories within the Penal Law including “criminal possession of weapons” or “manufacture, transport, disposition and defacement of weapons and dangerous instruments and appliances”. The specific reason for this is because machetes, as opposed to other “Deadly Weapons” do have a functional use for many people throughout the state including farming, hunting, landscaping, etc. Therefore, I chose to solely amend Section 10.00 of the Penal Law so that only those persons who use machetes with the intent to harm or harm someone recklessly or with criminal negligence can be charged accordingly.

I hope that this has clarified any confusion or concerns you have about my legislation.


Tony Avella"


Thanks for reaching out to the senator and sharing this info with us, Tom!

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Land Surveyors Building
Albany, NY 12210
518-432-4046 -- (f) 518-432-4055

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