A national firearms council comprised of national firearms interest groups, including the NT Firearms Council, and the Commonwealth Attorney Generals Department, Australian Customs, Australian Federal Police and the Australian Crime Commission had been set up by the previous Commonwealth Government. The new government at least initially decided to continue this arrangement. The first meeting under the new regime was held on 1 December 2008 at the request of Minister Bob Debus. Since then the new Minister the Hon Brendan O'Connor has formed a new body the Commonwealth Firearms advisory council with a limited membership. The NT Firearms Council, along with a number of other firearm associations, has not been included and while we have been invited to put forward issues of concern we have expressed out disappointment to the Minister. To our knowledge no meeting of the new body has been convened.
The FAC was established pursuant to section 55 of the NT Firearms Act and is responsible, at the request of the Minister, for advising the Commisioner of Police on applications for registration of firearms, to establish guidelines for establishment of shooting ranges, safe practices with use of firearms and review operations of the Act. It consists of the executive members of the Council, a member of the Police Force nominated by the Commissioner and other persons nominated by the Minister. Records of the meetings are available from the NTFC office.
After a long period of inactivity a meeting of the Firearms Advisory Council was re-convened on Wed 7 December 2016 with a view to initial exchanges of ideas, ratifying member composition, establishing Terms of Operational Reference for the future and a range of specific items for discussion. Attendees on 7 December were Commander Tony Fuller, Supt. Joanne Foley, Sgt Amee Meredith, Andy Armstrong (NTFC President), Tony Orr (NTFC Vice President), Dave Howe (NTFC Committee Member) and Alan Sprigg (NTFC Executive Officer. Items discussed included the National Firearms Agreement, changes to NT legislation, storage requirements, changes to permitted hand gun calibres to up to .460 and the Adler shotgun.
The Date for a further meeting has yet o be set.
This tribunal was established pursuant to section 50 of the NT Firearms Act. It consists of the Chief Magistrate or his/her nominee, a member nominated by this Council and one nominated by the Commissioner or Police. The tribunal has the powers to review appeals against decisions made by the Commissioner with respect to administration of the Act. Tribunals are convened relatively infrequently.