Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Police take aim at shooting club rules

New Zealand Police is encouraging public submissions on proposals for new regulations for shooting clubs and ranges, to help support community safety from firearms harm.

On 24 June 2022, a new part of the Arms Act 1983 comes into force to strengthen the oversight of shooting clubs and ranges. The new laws create requirements for all shooting clubs to be approved, and all shooting ranges to be certified, by the Police Commissioner.

Proposals for the new regulations are being shared with the public so those affected can submit views on the practical details and help shape the final form of the regulations. Public consultation on the proposals for new regulations for shooting clubs and ranges is now open, and will run for six weeks, until 4 May 2022.

“The proposals for the new regulations recognise the important role shooting clubs and ranges play in promoting the responsible and safe use of firearms, by providing a safe, controlled space to use firearms for recreation,” says Deputy Commissioner Jevon McSkimming.

“The vast majority of clubs and ranges operate responsibly and do so on a voluntary basis. The Act now requires this approach is ensured into the future through a regulatory framework. We want to test the proposals for regulations with firearms communities and the general public, to ensure all views are heard, and to make the new regulations effective for all.”

Established shooting clubs and ranges can continue their target shooting activities so long as they apply for approval or certification by 24 June 2023. Police Firearms staff are working with shooting club committees and range operators to help them prepare so they are ready to apply as soon as the regulations are in force. This is likely to be at the end of 2022.

These changes are the latest in significant and ongoing enhancements to the firearms regulatory regime, in response to the 15 March 2019 terrorist attack on the Christchurch masjidain.

The consultation document and further information can be found on the Police website here: https://www.police.govt.nz/advice-services/firearms-and-safety/what-do-i-need-know/new-firearms-laws-and-what-they-mean/consultation-shooting-clubs-ranges-regulations.

Further information on Clubs and Ranges can be found here: https://www.police.govt.nz/advice-services/firearms-and-safety/what-do-i-need-know/new-firearms-laws-and-what-they-mean/info-clubs-ranges.

Submissions are open to 4 May 2022.

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