Recreational Firearms Community
of Saskatchewan
Greg Illerbrun-Bringing You The Facts
March - 2003

Greg Illerbrun, RFCSask Chairmam

No doubt most of you have heard that the Liberals passed the motion for $59 million dollars required by the CFC.  You should know that this money only covers the expenses incurred between Christmas, when they didn't get their $72 million, and this year's budget.  Our illustrious leader, Jean, used his usual strong-arm tactics to ensure passage by threatening to expel anyone from caucus that voted against it.  Isn't democracy great!

They have budgeted 113.1 million for fiscal year 2003-2004; however, this does not include the additional 15 million request for another computer system, the third one since this fiasco started, or the tens of millions that are hidden in other department budgets.  The Federal Liberals are now trying to talk the Auditor General into not including the costs hidden in the other departments because in their words the money was "given" to them; which leaves me with the question, "How stupid do they think taxpayers are?"

They are spending nearly one million a day at present, so 113 million is not going to get them to the next budget.  As a result, they will have to come back for more supplemental funding, which will require another vote if they are to remain transparent, as they have promised.

You may recall that Justice is offloading this whole fiasco onto the Solicitor General's department, under Wayne Easter, as of April.  Mr. Easter is promising to make the required changes to the Act to bring costs under control, and it has been suggested that they will be consulting with the firearms community.  To date, consultations have been a farce and I would liken them to a parent talking to their child.  If the Feds were serious about cutting costs and making the system user friendly, they could have started out by simply working out a deal with the provinces and the volunteer firearms safety instructors with respect to training and licensing.  This initiative could have saved untold millions to date and if acted on now, would save millions in the future.

Instead, they have proceeded with their agenda as if there never was any existing gun controls in place, totally ignoring the fact that training, licensing, safe storage, and registration of handguns already existed.

I am not holding my breath that we will see any tangible changes. Instead, taxpayers should start preparing for the Feds to be digging into our pockets even deeper.  A recent study by the Library of Parliament shows that the enforcement of Bill C-68 could cost us another billion!

That is a billion dollars prosecuting duck hunters and farmers for activities that up until now have been a routine part of rural culture. Remember, any violation committed with a firearm, bat, vehicle is already covered by the criminal code; so we are talking about prosecution of newly invented paper crimes only.  Meanwhile, gang violence continues to escalate mostly using handguns that had to be registered since 1934.

On another note, the Government says it has approximately 6.1 million firearms registered to date.  The CFC estimates that there are only a total of 7 million firearms in the country, so they are floating this as a success story.  Interestingly, the RCMP estimated that there were 8.4 - 11 million in February 2001.  Considering that under the Federal Training Course you are taught not to divulge firearms information to anyone, so this number is no doubt very low too!

You have until June to register your guns as a result of the extension announced last December. Should any of this concern you, please do not hesitate to contact your local MP.   

As usual


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