If you're one of those value for money people, or an ideological conservative, you really want to wonder about the news the Conservative are poised to spend millions expanding the gun registry processing centre Miramichi, New Brunswick:
You always hear rumours the gun registry is to be closed down, but how often do you hear it's going to actually get bigger?They're not adding staff, but apparently the current space is to smaller, so they need a bigger one.
But growth may be in store for the registry, said a spokesman for the RCMP last week.
"At this time, the anticipated in-service date for the new accommodation is summer 2011," RCMP Sgt. Greg Cox said by e-mail from Ottawa.
Cox said the RCMP is in talks with Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) to arrange appropriate space for the gun registry, and are awaiting approval for such a project. He hoped it would come in the fall of this year, after which it will be easier to tell how things will go from there, including when tenders will be issued.
For ideological conservatives, the annoyance is that the Conservatives since first elected three years ago have failed to take any meaningful, serious action to attempt to abolish the gun registry, despite such a policy having been a core policy principle for years. Indeed, they're pumping more money into it.
Second, for those who just favour sensible fiscal management, its puzzling as well. While the Conservatives have promised not one job will be cut from the Mirimachi centre and they're investing tax dollars in its expansion, at the same time they've been continually taking steps to weaken the effectiveness and viability of the registry by issuing amnesties so owners don't need to register their rifles and shotguns. Does it really make sense to be spending more money on a program you're actively working to undermine and supposedly desperate to kill?
Assume they do eventually kill the registry for rifles and shotguns, leaving it for just handguns and what not. If they were serious about doing that, why expand the centre when the bulk of its workload would then be taken away?
Statistics from the Canadian Firearms Program's most recent report, however, shows that the long-gun registry makes up the vast majority of guns registered across the country and, therefore, the bulk of the work for Miramichi employees.They really seem to want to hold onto Tilly O'Neill-Gordon's seat. Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers
The figures show that of the 7,313,247 firearms registered across Canada as of December 2008, 6,652,208 are of the non-restricted or, long-gun variety, which includes hunting rifles and unmodified shotguns.
With restricted and prohibited firearms, meanwhile -- including handguns, semi-automatic and automatic weapons -- only about 660,000 are registered nationally.