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A chance to be heard

“If we pass something without taking the time to look at it and study it, then we are no better than the state legislature who did exactly that with this law,” Morrow said.

Residents of Essex County will now get their chance to be heard on the subject during a hearing at 6 p.m. next Monday at the board of supervisor’s chambers in Elizabethtown. This is your chance to have your opinion added to the more than 40 counties that have already passed measures calling for the repeal of the SAFE Act.

Essex County may be one of the last to act, but to criticize that is hypocritical if you also criticize those at the state who made the rush to judgement to pass the act in the first place. It would be safe to say that the first resolutions to repeal the law may have been knee-jerk reactions to a knee-jerk reaction, and two wrongs do not make a right.

In the same token, it would be hypocritical if you have been one crying for a voice in this matter and then neglect to take advantage of the opportunity the board of supervisors is affording. We encourage all sides to make their voices known, while sticking to our belief that the SAFE Act was indeed a rush to judgement that was created more for potential political gain than for the interest of public safety. As Sheriff Richard Cutting said, “the SAFE Act would not have prevented Sandy Hook, Columbine or any of these other massacres.”

We commend the board of supervisors for the approach they have taken to this topic. With that, let us offer a suggestion. The county has a budget committee that is already looking to make cuts to help save county taxpayers in the 2014 budget. It’s good to see the board starting early focusing on the budget and the anticipated shortfall in the coming year, but we suggest that the board combines that with more opportunities for the public to comment on the process.

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