New Zealand Police claim that in developing Regulations for shooting clubs and ranges they are simply following the law as prescribed by the Arms Legislation Act 2020.
Laws passed by the government following advice from Police, that shooting clubs posed a threat to public safety, and that police had done nothing to facilitate the Christchurch mosque terrorist attack. The latter now known to be totally false following the report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry which said ““We find that New Zealand Police failed to meet required standards in the administration of the firearms licensing system.”.
In preparing their 137 page discussion document on regulations for shooting clubs and ranges NZ police have shown disdain for the national bodies that govern and oversee the activities of all shooting disciplines. At no time were these bodies, or stake holder representatives of the police lead Firearms Community Advisory Forum consulted, but rather they employed a firm of public service consultants. One has to ask how much did this cost tax payers?
As Sporting Shooters Association Media Director Rob Cope Williams says “From a mind numbing read of the document it is easy to see that the authors did not appreciate that most shooting clubs are Incorporated Societies, governed by the fiscal requirements of the Incorporated Societies Act 1908, making their details a matter of public record. Nor do they understand how many clubs administered by unpaid volunteer committee members are actually managed and run.”
Shooting clubs and range operators will have just 12 months from June this year in which to apply for the Commissioners approval and get their ranges inspected and certified.
This in itself is impractical as most will require rule changes to meet the new regulation, something that can only be done at an Annual General Meeting. Range Standing orders will also need to be updated to satisfy the requirements of the yet to be published Police Range Manual.
Is it any wonder that members of the country’s shooting clubs and associations are up in arms, when they were only given 6 weeks to comment on these new regulations, that threaten the very existence of their sport, at a time when many are way hunting for the Roar.
Yet another example of how little the Police care for or understand the community they seek to regulate.