City of Buffalo, NY
Erie County
[HISTORY: Derived from Secs. 6, 6-A, 7, 14 and 39 of Ch. IX of the Charter and Ordinances, 1974, of the City of Buffalo; amended in its entirety 5-30-2000, effective 6-12-2000. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES

Peace and good order — See Ch. 313.

Obstruction of public safety — See Ch. 345.

ARTICLE I
Firearms and Arrows (§ 180-1 — § 180-4) 

ARTICLE II
Open Display or Carrying of Weapons in Certain Public Buildings (§ 180-5 — § 180-10) 

§ 180-1
Firearms, shotguns, rifles and other dangerous weapons. 

§ 180-2
Carrying loaded shotgun or rifle; exceptions. 

§ 180-3
Sale and use of arrows by children. 

§ 180-4
Throwing of missiles prohibited; use of designated areas required. 

§ 180-1 Firearms, shotguns, rifles and other dangerous weapons.

A. 

Purpose and intent. The City of Buffalo finds that violent crime is a serious problem in the City and firearms and other dangerous weapons are frequently used in the commission of crimes, particularly homicides and assaults. The possession of such weapons also often leads to accidental deaths and injuries. The possession and use of assault weapons and ammunition-feeding devices for criminal purposes is increasing and poses a serious danger to public safety. The use of weapons by persons under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol can readily lead to serious injury or death. The possession of weapons in public facilities and places also poses a serious danger to public safety. The possession of toy or imitation weapons which substantially duplicate actual weapons poses a danger to the person possessing the weapon and to others. In order to promote and protect the health, safety and welfare of the public, the City of Buffalo finds it necessary to place restrictions upon the possession and use of such weapons. The restrictions imposed by this section are intended to be in addition to restrictions found in state law and are not intended to conflict with state law provisions.

B. 

Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:

AMMUNITION
Explosives suitable to be fired from a firearm, machine gun, pistol, revolver, rifle, shotgun, assault weapon or other dangerous weapon.
AMMUNITION-FEEDING DEVICE
Magazines, belts, feedstrips, drums or clips capable of being attached to or utilized with any center-fire rifle, shotgun or pistol which employs the force of the expanding gases from a discharging cartridge to chamber a fresh round after each single pull of the trigger which, in the case of a rifle or shotgun, holds in excess of five cartridges, or in the case of a pistol holds in excess of 17 cartridges.
(1) 

Any center-fire rifle or shotgun which employs the force of the expanding gases from a discharging cartridge to chamber a fresh round after each single pull of the trigger, and which is loaded or capable of being loaded with a combination of more than six cartridges in the ammunition-feeding device and chamber combined. For the purposes of this section, a weapon is capable of being loaded if it is possessed by one who, at the same time, possesses:

(a) 

In the case of a rifle, a fixed or detachable ammunition feeding device which is attached to or utilized with or capable of being attached to or utilized with such rifle and which has a capacity of more than five cartridges; or

(b) 

In the case of a shotgun, an ammunition-feeding device which is attached to or utilized with or capable of being attached to or utilized with such shotgun and which has a capacity of more than five cartridges.

(2) 

A center-fire rifle or shotgun which employs the force of expanding gases from a discharging cartridge to chamber a fresh round after each single pull of the trigger, and which has:

(a) 

A flash suppressor attached to the weapon reducing muzzle flash;

(b) 

A grenade launcher;

(c) 

A sighting device making a target visible at night;

(d) 

A barrel jacket surrounding all or a portion of the barrel, to dissipate heat therefrom; or

(e) 

A multi-burst trigger activator.

(3) 

Any stockless pistol grip shotgun.

(4) 

For purposes of this section, the term "assault weapon" shall not include any of the following:

(a) 

Any weapon which has been modified to render it permanently inoperable or permanently make it a device no longer defined as an "assault" weapon.

(b) 

Weapons that do not use cartridges or shells.

(c) 

Manually operated bolt-action weapons, lever-action weapons, slide-action weapons or single-shot weapons.

(d) 

Multiple-barrel weapons, revolving-cylinder weapons except shotguns, weapons that use exclusively a rotary Mannlicher-style magazine.

(e) 

Any antique firearm as defined in § 265.00 of the New York State Penal Law or any curio or relic as defined under United States law which is possessed by a licensed collector in accordance with United States law.

DISPOSE OF
To dispose of, give away, give, lease, loan, keep for sale, offer, offer for sale, sell, transfer or otherwise dispose of.
DRUG
Any substance listed in § 3306 of the Public Health Law of the State of New York.
DWELLING
One or more rooms, in a building or portion thereof designed or used exclusively as the residence or sleeping place of one or more persons, designed for occupancy by one family for cooking, living and sleeping purposes, as defined in Chapter 511, Zoning, of this Code.
FIREARM
Any pistol or revolver, or a shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length or any weapon made from a shotgun (whether by alteration, modification or otherwise) if such weapon, as modified, has an overall length of less than 26 inches; or a rifle having one or more barrels less than 16 inches in length or any weapon made from a rifle (whether by alteration, modification or otherwise) if such weapon, as modified, has an overall length of less than 26 inches. For purposes of this definition, the length of a barrel on a shotgun or rifle shall be determined by measuring the distance between the muzzle and the face of the bolt, breech or breechlock when closed and when the shotgun or rifle is cocked; the overall length of a weapon made from a shotgun or rifle is the distance between the extreme ends of the weapon measured along a line parallel to the center line of the bore. Such definition, except as otherwise indicated, shall include both loaded and unloaded firearms, except that it shall not include any antique firearm as defined in federal or New York State law or any curio or relic as defined under United States law which is possessed by a licensed collector in accordance with United States law.
LOCKING DEVICE
A design adaptation or attachable accessory that will prevent the use of the firearm, rifle or shotgun by an unauthorized user, and includes but is not limited to a trigger lock, which prevents the pulling of the trigger without the use of a key, or a combination handle, which prevents the use of the firearm, rifle or shotgun without the alignment of the combination tumblers.
POSSESS
Have physical possession or otherwise to exercise dominion or control over. The presence in an automobile of any firearm, rifle or shotgun which is openly visible is presumptive evidence of its possession by all persons occupying such automobile at the time such firearm, rifle or shotgun is found, except if such firearm, rifle or shotgun is found in a vehicle for hire.
PUBLIC PLACE
Any street, including the sidewalk portion thereof, park, playground, recreation area, cemetery or lot owned, leased, operated or controlled by or on behalf of any government, municipality or public authority or corporation within the boundaries of the City, which is generally accessible to the public, except grounds used for educational purposes.
PUBLIC FACILITY
Any building or facility owned, leased, operated or controlled by or on behalf of any government, municipality or public authority or corporation within the boundaries of the City, except buildings or facilities used for educational purposes.
RIFLE
A weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade and intended to be fired from the shoulder and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed metallic cartridge to fire only a single projectile through a rifled bore for each single pull of the trigger.
SHOTGUN
A weapon designed or redesigned, made or remade and intended to be fired from the shoulder and designed or redesigned and made or remade to use the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell to fire through a smooth bore either a number of ball shot or a single projectile for each single pull of the trigger.
C. 

No person shall possess a loaded or unloaded firearm, rifle, shotgun or air gun, or a dagger, dangerous knife, dirk, razor or stiletto, in a public place or public facility in the City. This prohibition shall not apply to:

(1) 

A police officer or peace officer authorized to possess the same.

(2) 

A government employee or licensed security guard authorized or required by employment or office to possess the same while acting within the scope of such employment.

(3) 

A person in the military service of the State of New York or the United States when duly authorized to possess the same.

(4) 

A person transporting a rifle or shotgun in a motor vehicle in the City in accordance with the provisions of § 11-0931, Subdivision 2, of the New York State Environmental Conservation Law, or otherwise transporting an unloaded rifle, shotgun or air gun in the City, provided that the same is completely enclosed or contained in a nontransparent carrying case and either:

(a) 

Said carrying case is locked; or

(b) 

A locking device is attached to the weapon and locked in a manner so as to prevent the weapon from being fired.

(5) 

An authorized person who, for the purpose of shooting practice, possesses a weapon at an established target range in a public place other than a park or public facility.

(6) 

A person voluntarily surrendering the same in accordance with the provisions of Section 265.20 of the Penal law.

(7) 

Possession of a firearm by a person licensed to carry a firearm pursuant to § 400.00 of the Penal Law or possession or transportation by a gunsmith or dealer in firearms in accordance with a license issued by the State of New York or the United States, except that this subsection shall not apply in a park or a public facility other than a parking garage.

D. 

No person shall store a firearm, rifle, shotgun or air gun in a dwelling in the City unless said firearm, rifle, shotgun or air gun is completely enclosed or contained in a nontransparent locked carrying case or in a locked gun rack, cabinet, closet or safe, or a locking device is attached to the weapon and locked in a manner so as to prevent the weapon from being fired. This requirement shall not apply to a rifle, shotgun or licensed firearm carried on the body of the owner or within such close proximity of the owner that the owner can retrieve it as quickly and easily as if it were carried on the owner's body.

E. 

No person shall dispose of any firearm, rifle, shotgun, air gun or ammunition in the City. This prohibition shall not apply to:

(1) 

A gunsmith or dealer in firearms duly licensed by the State of New York or the United States.

(2) 

A person disposing of the same to a gunsmith or dealer in firearms duly licensed by the State of New York or the United States.

(3) 

A person voluntarily surrendering the same in accordance with the provisions of § 265.20 of the Penal Law.

(4) 

A person disposing of a licensed firearm in accordance with law.

(5) 

Disposition by intestate or testamentary bequest.

(6) 

A person disposing of a rifle, shotgun, air gun or ammunition to a family member.

F. 

No person shall possess an assault weapon or an ammunition-feeding device in the City. This prohibition shall not apply to:

(1) 

A police officer or peace officer authorized to possess the same.

(2) 

A person in the military service of the State of New York or the United States when duly authorized to possess the same.

(3) 

A person voluntarily surrendering the same in accordance with the provisions of § 265.20 of the Penal law.

(4) 

A gunsmith or dealer in firearms duly licensed by the State of New York or the United States for weapons to be used by police officers or persons in the military service or for delivery outside of the City.

G. 

No person shall dispose of an assault weapon or ammunition-feeding device in the City. This prohibition shall not apply to:

(1) 

A person voluntarily surrendering the same in accordance with the provisions of § 265.20 of the Penal Law.

(2) 

A gunsmith or dealer in firearms duly licensed by the State of New York or the United States for weapons to be used by police offices or persons in the military service or for delivery outside of the City.

H. 

No person shall carry a firearm, shotgun, rifle or air gun in the City while such person has 1/10 of 1% or more by weight of alcohol in the person's blood as shown by chemical analysis of the person's blood, breath, urine or saliva.

I. 

No person shall carry a firearm, shotgun, rifle or air gun in the City while in an intoxicated condition.

J. 

No person shall carry a firearm, shotgun, rifle or air gun in the City while the person's ability to safely carry such weapon is impaired by the use of a drug.

K. 

Any person who carries a firearm, shotgun, rifle or air gun in the City shall be deemed to have given consent to a breath test and a chemical test of the person's breath, blood, urine or saliva for the purpose of determining the alcoholic or drug content of the person's blood, provided that any test is administered at the direction of a police officer having reasonable grounds therefor. A chemical test must be administered within two hours after such person has been placed under arrest for a violation of this section or any other law or ordinance involving the use or possession of a firearm, rifle, shotgun or air gun, or within two hours after a breath test indicates that alcohol has been consumed by such person. Upon the trial of any action arising out of an arrest for a violation of Subsection H, I or J of this section, the court shall admit evidence of the amount of alcohol or drugs in the blood of the person carrying the firearm, shotgun, rifle or air gun as shown by a test administered pursuant to this section. Evidence of a refusal to submit to a chemical test shall be admissible in any trial, proceeding or hearing based upon a violation of such subsections, but only upon a showing that the person was given sufficient warning, in clear and unequivocal language, of the effect of such refusal and the person persisted in such refusal.

L. 

Discharge of weapons; permits.

(1) 

No person shall discharge an air gun, shotgun, rifle, assault weapon, machine gun, submachine gun or a firearm of any kind or description in the City, except police officers, peace officers, members of the military and persons holding permits as in this subsection provided.

(2) 

The Commissioner of Police is hereby authorized to grant permits for the discharge of shotguns at clay pigeons at any particular location or for the discharge of weapons at target ranges subject to such restrictions and conditions as the Commissioner may deem necessary. Any person holding such a permit shall obey all the restrictions and conditions contained herein.

M. 

Penalties for offenses. A violation of any provision of this section shall be punishable by a fine not to exceed $1,500 or by imprisonment not to exceed 15 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

N. 

The provisions of this section are severable, and if any of its provisions shall be held unconstitutional or invalid, the decision of the court shall not affect or impair any of the remaining provisions of the same. It is hereby declared to be the intention of the Council that this section would have been adopted had such unconstitutional or invalid provision not been included herein. If any term or provision of this section shall be declared unconstitutional, invalid or ineffective in whole, or in part, by a court of competent jurisdiction, then to the extent that it is not unconstitutional, invalid or ineffective, such term or provision shall be in force and effect, nor shall such determination be deemed to invalidate the remaining terms or provisions thereof.

§ 180-2 Carrying loaded shotgun or rifle; exceptions.

Nothing herein contained shall be construed to prohibit the possession, custody or use of said shotgun or rifle for the lawful purpose of self-defense or the defense of others.

§ 180-3 Sale and use of arrows by children.

A. 

No person shall offer, sell, loan, lease or give broadhead arrows or broadhead tips, also known as "hunting arrows or tips," to any child under the age of 16 years.

B. 

The unlawful use of bows and arrows or other archery devices and the unlawful possession by a child under 16 years of age of broadhead arrows or tips is hereby declared a nuisance, and said unlawfully used or possessed archery equipment shall be destroyed as a nuisance in accordance with law.

§ 180-4 Throwing of missiles prohibited; use of designated areas required.

No person shall throw stones, snowballs, missiles or other objects or shoot with or use a bow and arrow or sling or play at ball in a public place or a private place of assemblage except as to such public or private places designated for such use.

§ 180-5
Legislative findings. 

§ 180-6
Definitions. 

§ 180-7
Prohibited acts. 

§ 180-8
Surrender and return of weapon. 

§ 180-9
Possession of illegal weapons. 

§ 180-10
Possession of legal weapons. 

§ 180-5 Legislative findings.

The Common Council, in order to assure the proper protection, health, safety and welfare of persons lawfully in the public buildings of the City of Buffalo and in order to ensure the performance of essential governmental functions by City employees without threat or intimidation to such employees or others, finds it to be in the public interest to prohibit the open display or transport of any weapon in certain public buildings of the City.

§ 180-6 Definitions.

When used in this article, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings herein ascribed to them:

OPENLY CARRY OR DISPLAY
The possession or transport by any person of a weapon, as hereinafter defined, in such a manner that the weapon is visible to persons in the immediate vicinity, except where such possession or transportation is consistent with an authorized activity of function at the specific City building where such possession occurs.
PERSON
Any person, except a police officer or a peace officer.
PUBLIC BUILDING
The following buildings, structures or property owned, occupied or operated by the City of Buffalo:
A. 

City Hall.

B. 

City Court Building.

C. 

Dunn Tire Park.

D. 

Johnnie B. Wiley Sports Pavilion.

E. 

Kleinhans Music Hall.

WEAPON
A firearm, electronic dart gun, gravity knife, switchblade knife, cane sword, billy, blackjack, bludgeon, metal knuckles, chuka stick, sandbag, shuriken, sandclub, slingshot dagger, dangerous knife, dirk, razor, stiletto, imitation pistol or any other dangerous or deadly instrument or weapon.

§ 180-7 Prohibited acts.

No person shall openly carry or display a weapon in any public building owned, occupied or operated by the City of Buffalo.

§ 180-8 Surrender and return of weapon.

No person who openly carries or displays a weapon in any public building shall refuse to surrender such weapon at the request of any police officer or peace officer. Any weapon so surrendered shall be returned to such person upon his or her departure from the public building, provided that the possession thereof is lawful.

§ 180-9 Possession of illegal weapons.

Nothing contained in this chapter shall be deemed to authorize the possession of any weapon, the possession of which is made unlawful by any other law, statute, ordinance or resolution.

§ 180-10 Possession of legal weapons.

Nothing contained in this chapter shall be deemed to prohibit the possession of any weapon otherwise lawful under the circumstances herein specified.