Colonie adopts sex-offender law

"Sex offenders who share a residence may be less likely to re-offend than those living on their own," she said.

"Furthermore, such concentration can facilitate monitoring by law enforcement."

But Supervisor Paula Mahan said the town has already spent too much money on additional law enforcement in those areas.

Magguilli said the town also spends money every time a sex offender moves into the town because officials have to send out notifications to all of the neighbors.

Trimble left the meeting before the board voted in favor of the law.

Many who spoke at the meeting expressed gratitude to the town for considering any measure that would take at least some sex offenders out of their neighborhood.

Joyce Bard said she moved back to her hometown after being away for many years and was astonished to find the area filled with prostitutes, drug dealers and sex offenders.

"Our whole community is changing," she said. "I'm embarrassed to say I live in South Colonie. We're the ghetto."

Of the several people who spoke in favor of the law, one was 16-year-old Lauren Motto, a student at Colonie Central High School, who urged the importance of laws that keep sex offenders away from her, her friends and her family. Motto said that it was unfortunate that the issue was "still stuck in a board meeting, saying this needs to be changed."

Immediately following the vote, Councilman Tom With asked that residents go home and take a look at the law, and if they believe there is anything that needs to be altered that they bring it to the attention of the board.

Town considers lawsuit against state

In an interview after the Aug. 6 meeting, Magguilli discussed a potential lawsuit between the Town of Colonie and New York State regarding the overconcentration of sex offenders in Colonie.

Magguilli said his office filed a Freedom of Information Law request to the state parole office looking into whether the state is complying with its own law that promises to monitor how many sex offenders reside in a particular location.

"I don't think they are," Magguilli said of the state's compliance.

While the state has not answered the FOIL request, Magguilli said his office has received notification that the state has received the request.

Should the town discover the state is not complying with its own law, Magguilli said the town would be considering a Section 78 lawsuit.


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