Firearms Owners Association
April 15, 2009
Dear Mr. Hudson:
On behalf of the Prime Minister, thank you for your recent [06 March 2009] correspondence concerning the long-gun registry. We are pleased to have this opportunity to respond.
On April 1 our Government introduced Bill S-5, an amendment to the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act, to eliminate the requirement for Canadians to register their non-restricted long-guns. Originally introduced in 2006, and again in 2007, this legislation did not previously advance because of the Opposition parties' continued support of the wasteful registry.
Our Government has been clear that we support the repeal of a requirement that unfairly targets farmers and hunters, not criminals. With the reintroduction of Bill S-5, we will fulfill our promise to terminate the necessity for individuals and businesses to register non-restricted long-guns. Instead, we will require firearms retailers to record all sales transactions of non-restricted firearms, as was the case prior to the imposition of the long-gun registry.
By neglecting this licensing system, the Liberals squandered over a billion dollars of tax-payers' hard-earned money, creating a failed registry which, according to the Auditor General, contains unreliable data.
Firearm owners will still be required to hold a valid license, and comply with all safe storage requirements. Registration of prohibited and restricted firearms, such as handguns, will continue to be in effect. Our efforts to abolish wasteful spending are matched by our continued efforts to combat criminal gun crimes.
As you know, Gary Breitkreuz, Member of Parliament for Yorkton-Melville, recently introduced a Private Members Bill in the House of Commons to repeal the failed registry. Bill C-301 contains a handful of measures not directly related to this objective. Mr. Breitkreuz has stated publicly that these issues are not central to his long-standing goal, and that of this Government, to eliminate the registry. He has indicated his intention to amend his Bill upon the resumption of Parliament.