GUN owners would need to show proof of ownership as well as their gun licence when they purchase ammunition for firearms if new legislation proposed by NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell is passed.
The restrictions are part of a raft of new laws including tougher sentencing for gun crime designed to tackle the rise in drive-by shootings.
Under the changes to be introduced into Parliament this week, people who fire at a dwelling as part of organised criminal activity will face a maximum jail term of 16 years.
The tighter restrictions on ammunition sales, which would also force suppliers to keep a record of all ammunition sold, would be an inconvenience for gun owners and do little to decrease the recent spate of shootings, Bullets & Bits part-owner Matt Shearim said.
“No-one’s going to want to bring their ownership papers in every time they buy ammunition,” he said.
Even if the system was changed to include all firearms listed on the licence, gun ownership could change so quickly it would be hard to keep up-to-date, Mr Shearim said.
Bullets & Bits part-owner Ray Hawkins said it was unfair that law-abiding gun owners would be restricted by the proposal.
“Why should we have to prove it [ownership]?” he said.
“It seems to be a knee-jerk reaction.”
Mr Hawkins feels tougher sentencing for gun crime would help reduce the number of shootings but increases to maximum jail terms would only work if magistrates “dish out” the maximum penalties.
The rise in illegal guns and ammunition would cancel out the government’s moves to track the sale of ammunition.
The sale of material for gun owners to make their own ammunition, including gun powder, is not restricted, Mr Hawkins said.
Gun owner Guy Gaeta agreed the tougher restrictions would do little to reduce gun crime but instead would be “more bother” for law-abiding shooters.
“Are they going to keep track of every bullet we fire?” he said.
“I don’t know anyone who would buy ammunition for a weapon they don’t own.”