Erie County’s Pistol Permit Process is broken

Years of letting a growing problem fester are coming to a head at the Erie County Clerk’s Office— the Pistol Permit process is broken. We deserve better.


All around Erie County, people are telling me it’s taking 18-23 months to get a pistol permit, when it only takes three months in neighboring counties.

That’s a 700% longer wait to get a pistol permit in Erie County than for folks who live minutes away.

Instead of trying to make the process easier, this summer, the current leadership at the clerk’s office closed the satellite pistol permit office in Cheektowaga—- because of “staffing problems” (which is a just another way to say bad planning and management).

Erie County's Pistol Permit Process is broken

It's a 700% longer wait to get a pistol permit in Erie County than in neighboring counties. We can do better!

Posted by Steve Cichon for Erie County Clerk on Tuesday, August 22, 2017

As if that’s not enough– now there are privacy leaks now too. James has been waiting nearly a year and a half for a pistol permit. The envelope was addressed to him, the letter had his name on it, but enclosed was pistol permit for a woman named Amanda– complete with her private information.

The Pistol Permit office at the Erie County Clerk’s Office needs new leadership and new ideas. It looks like we need to open offices, not close them. We need to hire the staff necessary to properly serve the people of Erie County– just like they do in our neighboring counties.

We need a speedier, more efficient system in place. To make that happen, I’ll bring together our local police departments and our State Supreme Court to find ways we can work together to make a drawn out process more manageable for all of us and our citizens– Because that’s what leaders do.

And it goes without saying that we can’t be flip with our citizens private information. We must stop any breech of privacy and security and make certain that when we send out critical documents like pistol permits, the mail is double checked and triple checked.

It’s common sense– at least it is for me. I’ve never run for office before, and I want to bring a new voice, new vision, and common sense to county government.