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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 7 Hansard (26 June) . . Page.. 2597 ..



legislation to ensure this. Endorsement by the Prime Minister will enable bilateral and intergovernmental agreements to be signed between the Commonwealth and each jurisdiction, giving effect to the buy-back procedures and the associated Commonwealth funding.

There is a national understanding and expectation that, apart from New South Wales and South Australia, the legislation and associated buy-back will commence on 1 July 2003. I understand the legislation has been introduced, if not passed, in the lower house of the New South Wales parliament. The bill complies fully with COAG agreements, and we are on track for the buy-back to commence at the City Police Station on 1 July. There is a strong expectation among hand gun shooters that the legislation and the buy-back will commence then. Information sessions by the department and the dissemination of details of the buy-back procedures to all owners have been organised.

The bill creates a comprehensive regime for the prohibition of certain unacceptable and unjustified hand guns. Hand gun shooters who wish to use legal hand guns must meet stricter genuine reason and genuine need tests to own and use those hand guns. All competition hand gun shooters, particularly those contemplating taking up the sport, must pass stricter tests to determine their fit and proper status to own and use a firearm. The vast majority of hand gun shooters now conform to those provisions, and they will continue to do so. These provisions form part of their current regimes and, as a consequence, the provisions were recommended at national forums established to develop the new regulatory regime.

This continues previous efforts. Members across the way received strong support from this Assembly in 1996 with the then new firearms legislation. As a result, the ACT was the first jurisdiction to enact its legislation and commence its buy-back. That legislation has stood the test of time and served the community and shooters well. I am sure that, when this bill is passed today, it will serve the test of time just as well. I thank members for their support.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Detail stage

Clauses 1 to 4, by leave, taken together and agreed to.

Clause 5.


(4.46): I move amendment No 1 circulated in my name [see schedule 2 at page 2668]. This amendment is a simple amendment that allows the police minister to name other weapons as prohibited pistols. The naming of any extra pistols would be a disallowable instrument. What this amendment allows the minister and the government to do is truly lead the country, with the tightest regulations in the country.

I understand the difficulties that faced our police minister at the Australian Police Ministers Council meeting and at the Council of Australian Governments, where the bigger states, with a lot more people interested in guns in them, would push what we are

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