March 22, 2018 12:07 pm

Saskatchewan gun owners up in arms over potential changes to firearm regulations

Gun owners are up in arms over upcoming federal regulations that would change the rules on restricted firearms.

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Gun owners are up in arms over upcoming federal regulations that would change the rules on restricted firearms.

“Our laws are strict enough in Canada,” Darryl Schemenauer, the owner of TnT Gunworks said.

But these changes could make them stricter, especially when it comes to the country’s most regulated guns.

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“The only thing I’m concerned about is the RCMP changing the classes of firearms — that’s what we’re kind of scared about. It gives them the power to change a normal firearm to possibly a restricted or prohibited firearm,” Schemenauer said.

READ MORE: Reality Check: What do the changes to Canadian gun laws mean for you?

The new regulations would grandfather in current owners, assuming they have a restricted licence, but would change the way these guns can be used.

“By grandfathering it, you make it sound like things are just the same as they always were, but in reality, these guns can now only be used at the gun range. The utility is lost for anyone who uses them for varmint hunting, or out on the farm, or anything like that,” Peter Quesnel, a master firearms instructor, explained.

The coming changes have some people stocking up on guns they fear may become restricted or prohibited in the future.

READ MORE: Trudeau government introduces gun bill to tighten control of sales, licensing

“People are buying a little more, people are just getting it before it could be a problem, so yes, it has created a little bit of a stir out there,” Schemenauer said.

The new regulations also limit the places that restricted guns can be taken without authorization from the chief firearms officer. The only authorized transport will be between the owner’s home and the gun range.

“When we’re looking at [those changes], there are other conditions that you could have like [transporting restricted firearms] to and from gun stores, gun repair facilities, even to the border crossing. Every time someone needs to make these changes, they have to call the RCMP and request it,” Quesnel said.

Gun stores will also be required to record all firearm sales and the buyer’s licence, something Schemenauer says most stores already do.

The new regulations also change background checks, extending the five years’ review to a lifetime check; something both Quesnel and Schemenauer were in favour of.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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