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LEGISLATION & LICENCING ISSUES
We are reliably advised that, starting as from 19 April, the Police Firearms Registry will be commencing an audit of expired firearms licences.
Where licences have expired and firearms are apparently still held by such (non) licencees, Police will be attending in the near future to seize these firearms and will keep them for the time being at the Firearms Registry.
Owners will then be given a choice of either ….
•Renewing the Licence – in which case the firearms will be returned to the owner
•Asking that they be collected and held by a licenced dealer
•Having the firearm destroyed.
Please pass this on to colleagues. See also NOTE below.
Changes to Firearms legislation have now passed in the NT Parliament including provision for 10 year Licences for A&B Shooters. As part of the deal though on any renewal from now the Police require a physical sighting of the person's registered firearms to verify identification numbers. Four or less to be presented at a Police Station. Five or more firearms on hand will be needing an inspection visit.
Police advise this is a necessary part of cleansing their records as there are large numbers of firearms in the community registered with incorrect serial numbers. In some cases model numbers have been recorded instead of serial numbers and in others the numbers on different parts of the firearm have been recorded - e.g. bolt, barrel, butt, stock and metal fore-end numbers being recorded as serial numbers when the breech number is different - or sixes and eights or eights and threes being notoriously similar on older pieces.There are instances of single firearms having up to a dozen identities over their lives and multiple recordings on record systems.
The Federal Government has been discussing a new amnesty arrangement in conjunction with new firearms anti smuggling laws. Arrangements are not yet in place as at late October 2016 but the following comments apply to all firearms no longer required by their owners as a better proposition for responsible firearms owners than seeing useful items just cut up and scrapped. The Adler shotgun, in the news recently, remained a banned import until such time as all states reach a consensus on its classification. The States & Territories have now supported going to a B classification for Adlers up to 5 shot capacity and going to a D classification for those of more than 5 shot capacity. Changes are proposed to be now made to the National Firearms Agreement but these are not legislative changes and it is up to each State & Territory to amend its legislation as it sees fit.
PLEASE NOTE however, as firearms enthusiasts (and while non-enthusiasts just would not understand) we hate to see functional, restorable and repairable firearms destroyed simply because the current owner has lost interest or doesn't have the time to dispose of the firearm in an orderly manner.
If you do have a firearm which is rusted up, unsafe, damaged, major parts missing or difficult to repair please hand it in to the Police. Should it not be a basket case though, and regardless of classification, please think about contacting the Firearms Council (via 0418 894589) which can arrange its safe legal collection by one of our dealer representatives and eventual passage to a good home with one of our members. (likely by auction with proceeds to Council as a non-profit peak body organisation)