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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,

I am a resident of Cortland County and I plan on applying for my pistol permit as soon as I turn 21. I was wondering if anyone would care to share what their experiences were like when applying in Cortland County and what sort of timeline you experienced. I will be turning in my application on my 21st birthday, but I will also be leaving for 2 months (Army ROTC Training) on that day. Will this cause any problems for my application process? I will be completely out of touch for the first month and then available by phone for the second month. Any help is appreciated.
 

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Hello everyone,

I am a resident of Cortland County and I plan on applying for my pistol permit as soon as I turn 21. I was wondering if anyone would care to share what their experiences were like when applying in Cortland County and what sort of timeline you experienced. I will be turning in my application on my 21st birthday, but I will also be leaving for 2 months (Army ROTC Training) on that day. Will this cause any problems for my application process? I will be completely out of touch for the first month and then available by phone for the second month. Any help is appreciated.
I received my unrestricted permit three years ago, and it only took 80 days from when I applied. More recent applications seem to be taking up to 120 days. Below is a summary of my experience that I wrote up for another forum. Assuming there is no problem with you references, the only time you will need to be around after you apply is for the interview with at the State Trooper office in Homer. This is toward the end of the process after your FBI check is done. If you are only out of town for 2 months, this should not be a problem.

Cortland County

Eligibility Requirements:

* Over 21 years of age (age requirement does not apply to those honorably discharged from the military).
* Is of good moral character and has not been convicted of a "serious" offense (inc. violations and misdemeanors as set forth in section 265.00 Subd. 17, PL.).
* States if and when treatment received for a mental illness.
* Has "no good cause" existing for denial of the license".

Fees:

* $10.00 application fee due at the time the application is given out.
* $105.25 fee for fingerprint processing due upon return of the completed application.
* $3.00 fee for each handgun amendment to the license.
* $5.00 fee for issuing a duplicate or replacement card.

Application Process: The Handgun License Clerk, Julie Easton, is very helpful, and can answer any questions about completing the application. Although the written application instructions say otherwise, I asked and was told that they would accept character references from surrounding counties if you do not have enough from within Cortland County.

If you live within the Cortland City limits, you can have you fingerprints taken by the Cortland City Police. All other county residents should go to the Cortland County Jail to have their fingerprints taken. You will need to schedule an appointment, but there is no fee to have the fingerprinting done at the County Jail (Note this is no longer the case, all fingerprinting is now done via a private company). Photos for the application can be done at the County Clerk's Office for $10.00. Furthermore, they will also notarize the completed application for free when you drop it off.

An investigation will be conducted of all statements required in the application, including fingerprints and physical descriptive data of the applicant. One copy of prints will be forwarded to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for a search of their criminal records. Once your FBI check is completed, a NY State Police Investigator will contact you for a face-to-face interview. Assuming there is nothing turned up during the FBI, the interview should be a brief review of your application. Next, the investigator will contact the four character references listed on your application. Once that task is completed, the investigator will submit a report to the issuing County Judge, and the judge will make a final decision on your application.

Once the license is issued, you will have one year to complete a 10-hour, NRA-certified handgun safety course, and submit proof of this to the County Clerk's Office. Failure to comply will result in the revocation of your license. Law enforcement and military personnel are exempt from this requirement.

Process Time: I was told it would likely take 90-120 days when I submitted my application in February 2009. However, it only took approximately 80 days from when I submitted my completed application to when I received notification in the mail that my application had been approved.

Restrictions: It seems that most persons that have applied for an unrestricted license have received them. As of 2009, both current County Judges (Ames & Campbell) will issue an unrestricted license.

Purchasing: With an approved license, you can obtain a pre-signed coupon to purchase a handgun. Each coupon costs $3.00, and is good for 1 handgun. The coupon is only valid for the license holder, and expires 10 days after issued. Unused and/or expired coupons must be returned to the County Clerk within 20 days of issuance. Failure to do this will result in you losing the privilege of getting future pre-approved coupons, and may include revocation of your handgun license. You can take your coupon to any FFL dealer within the state, purchase your handgun, and immediately take the handgun with you. However, within 10 days of purchase you must take the Bill of Sale for the handgun to the County Clerk and have the handgun added to your license. Again, failure to do so will result in revocation of you license. The county now uses plastic photo-ID cards, and will print a new license with your registered handguns listed on the back.

Personal Experience: Overall, it was a relatively painless process, and I did not have any difficulty obtaining a license without restrictions. All the people I dealt with at the Cortland County Clerk's Office, the County Jail, and the NY State Police Office were very professional and efficient.

Where to go: Cortland County Clerk's Office
 

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I received my unrestricted permit three years ago, and it only took 80 days from when I applied. More recent applications seem to be taking up to 120 days. Below is a summary of my experience that I wrote up for another forum. Assuming there is no problem with you references, the only time you will need to be around after you apply is for the interview with at the State Trooper office in Homer. This is toward the end of the process after your FBI check is done. If you are only out of town for 2 months, this should not be a problem.

Cortland County

Eligibility Requirements:

* Over 21 years of age (age requirement does not apply to those honorably discharged from the military).
* Is of good moral character and has not been convicted of a "serious" offense (inc. violations and misdemeanors as set forth in section 265.00 Subd. 17, PL.).
* States if and when treatment received for a mental illness.
* Has "no good cause" existing for denial of the license".

Fees:

* $10.00 application fee due at the time the application is given out.
* $105.25 fee for fingerprint processing due upon return of the completed application.
* $3.00 fee for each handgun amendment to the license.
* $5.00 fee for issuing a duplicate or replacement card.

Application Process: The Handgun License Clerk, Julie Easton, is very helpful, and can answer any questions about completing the application. Although the written application instructions say otherwise, I asked and was told that they would accept character references from surrounding counties if you do not have enough from within Cortland County.

If you live within the Cortland City limits, you can have you fingerprints taken by the Cortland City Police. All other county residents should go to the Cortland County Jail to have their fingerprints taken. You will need to schedule an appointment, but there is no fee to have the fingerprinting done at the County Jail. Photos for the application can be done at the County Clerk's Office for $10.00. Furthermore, they will also notarize the completed application for free when you drop it off.

An investigation will be conducted of all statements required in the application, including fingerprints and physical descriptive data of the applicant. One copy of prints will be forwarded to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for a search of their criminal records. Once your FBI check is completed, a NY State Police Investigator will contact you for a face-to-face interview. Assuming there is nothing turned up during the FBI, the interview should be a brief review of your application. Next, the investigator will contact the four character references listed on your application. Once that task is completed, the investigator will submit a report to the issuing County Judge, and the judge will make a final decision on your application.

Once the license is issued, you will have one year to complete a 10-hour, NRA-certified handgun safety course, and submit proof of this to the County Clerk's Office. Failure to comply will result in the revocation of your license. Law enforcement and military personnel are exempt from this requirement.

Process Time: I was told it would likely take 90-120 days when I submitted my application in February 2009. However, it only took approximately 80 days from when I submitted my completed application to when I received notification in the mail that my application had been approved.

Restrictions: It seems that most persons that have applied for an unrestricted license have received them. As of 2009, both current County Judges (Ames & Campbell) will issue an unrestricted license.

Purchasing: With an approved license, you can obtain a pre-signed coupon to purchase a handgun. Each coupon costs $3.00, and is good for 1 handgun. The coupon is only valid for the license holder, and expires 10 days after issued. Unused and/or expired coupons must be returned to the County Clerk within 20 days of issuance. Failure to do this will result in you losing the privilege of getting future pre-approved coupons, and may include revocation of your handgun license. You can take your coupon to any FFL dealer within the state, purchase your handgun, and immediately take the handgun with you. However, within 10 days of purchase you must take the Bill of Sale for the handgun to the County Clerk and have the handgun added to your license. Again, failure to do so will result in revocation of you license. The county now uses plastic photo-ID cards, and will print a new license with your registered handguns listed on the back.

Personal Experience: Overall, it was a relatively painless process, and I did not have any difficulty obtaining a license without restrictions. All the people I dealt with at the Cortland County Clerk's Office, the County Jail, and the NY State Police Office were very professional and efficient.

Where to go: Cortland County Clerk's Office
The only problem with your description is that now Cortland County does not have you do fingerprinting at the jail or city police, they don't give out fingerprint cards. You have to schedule and appointment with a private company that does background checks and security clearances. You pay the background check fee when you go see them.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
259 days later.... I finally got my permit! Below is the timeline I had.

Application submitted: Day 0
Called for interview: Day 241
Interview with NYS Police: Day 246
References called: Day 246
Application approved: Day 259

Based on my experience, it is taking about 8 months to get an interview. Like jma5000 said, fingerprinting is done by a private company located at the hospital. I was told that I would hear back in 4-6 weeks (it actually took 37 weeks!). My interview was conducted with the NYS Police in Homer. The investigator was polite and respectful and the interview lasted less than 10 minutes. All of my references were called that day and I received my letter in the mail 2 weeks later saying my application had been approved by Judge Julie Campbell. Now it is time to go shopping!
 
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