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Opposition moves to block Government's move to disadvantage Australian rifle shooters

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PETER WHITE M R 2 1Federal Member for McPhersonSHADOW MINISTER FOR DEFENCEMEDIA RELEASED33/88 13 APRIL 1988 OPPOSITION MOVES TO BLOCK GOVERNMENT'S MOVE TO DISADVANTAGE AUSTRALIAN RIFLE SHOOTERSThe Opposition, in conjunction with the Australian Democrats, is set to defeat an attempt by the Government to seriously disadvantage sports shooters around Australia.The Government, in a recent Regulation, effectively passed control of cltibs and associations affiliated with, both, the National Rifle Association of Australia (NRAA) and the Australian Small-Bore and Air Rifle Association (ASARA) from Commonwealth jurisdiction to the States.Such a move allows States to impose unnecessarily strict licensing and operating procedures on these clubs and associations, if they so wish. This will force many clubs and associations to close their rifle range facilites especially if the safety distances required surrounding some rifle ranges are increased.The recent attempt by the Cain Government to increase one aspect of gun control in Victoria reflects the fear that the Opposition has regarding a possible knee-jerk over-reaction on the part of some States. The Victorian Government's move which was countered by the State Opposition could only have acted against the interests of the NRAA and ASARA clubs and associations and was an unnecessary measure.By handing control of rifle clubs and associations to the States the Government has, ironically, created a situation which has the potential to impose a greater gun problem on the Nation.Some clubs, which could be forced off their premises due to the possible increases to safety distances, would be unable to provide new facilities for their members due to financial costs associated with establishing new ranges further removed from inhabited areas.The interests of rifle clubs and associations throughout Australia have been placed in jeopardy by the Government's desire to divest itself of its role in promoting a safe environment for the continuation of sports rifle shooting in Australia.The Opposition intends to disallow the repeal of the Governemnt's repeal of the Australian Rifle Club Regulations.endsCOMMONW EALTH PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARYC. I. s.C . - - t. i - ยท- r\ 4 4 ry-}