Museums must now hold a firearms dealer’s license


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Museums must apply for a firearms dealer license to collect, hold and display firearms as a result of changes to the Arms Legislation Act 2020. Pictured is Te Papa.  (File photo)

MONIQUE FORD / Stuff

Museums must apply for a firearms dealer license to collect, hold and display firearms as a result of changes to the Arms Legislation Act 2020. Pictured is Te Papa. (File photo)

New Zealand museums are now required to hold a firearms dealer’s license to collect, hold and display firearms and have just over a month to apply.

The new rule is part of changes to the Arms Legislation Act 2020 that impact the current dealer licensing rules.

Victoria Esson, board member of the International Council of Museums of Aotearoa in New Zealand and director of national services Te Paerangi, said the new gun licensing rules “would help ensure that guns firearms are safer, better documented and that all personnel responsible for weapons in museums are aware of their responsibilities and have the knowledge and skills to mitigate potential security risks ”.

“Aotearoa Museums, Te Paerangi National Services and specialists in our sector are working proactively with New Zealand Police to study in detail the impact and requirements of license changes in our sector.

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Museums are affected by the changes to the Act.  Pictured, Chris Rapley of the South Canterbury Museum holds a single-shot handgun, known as the Kea Gun.

JOHN BISSET / Stuff

Museums are affected by the changes made to the Act. Pictured, South Canterbury Museum’s Chris Rapley holds a single-shot handgun, known as the Kea Gun.

“Our shared priority is to ensure that all museums receive the guidance and support they need to ensure that they can continue to hold and display firearms in their collections in accordance with the Law on Firearms. weapons licenses. “

One of the main changes to the law, described in a police press release, is “the expansion of the types of activities that require a distributor’s license”.

Under the new rules, those who display guns as a director or curator of a real museum and those who repair or modify guns must apply for a gun dealer license.

Police urge people to “view the expanded list of dealership activities and file the required claims.”

“The police are aware that (…) some people have been legally engaged in activities that did not previously require a dealer’s license – for example, exhibiting weapons as a director or curator of a museum, or repairing weapons . “

Museums across the country will now need a firearms dealer's license to own and display firearms.  Pictured, Chris Rapley is hosting an exhibit at the South Canterbury Museum earlier this year.  (File photo)

JOHN BISSET / Stuff

Museums across the country will now need a firearms dealer’s license to own and display firearms. Pictured, Chris Rapley is hosting an exhibit at the South Canterbury Museum earlier this year. (File photo)

Those affected by the changes have until August 23 to submit a request.

“During this time, they must otherwise comply with the law.”

New Zealand Shooters Association president Neville Dodd has raised concerns about the potential impact of the new rules.

“Museums are already required to have a standard firearms license if they have firearms in their collection.

“Requiring now that they hold an annual firearms dealer license only adds unnecessary complexity and cost, as museums are obviously not buying, selling, renting or manufacturing guns and therefore are not dealers, ”Dodd said.

He said museums have adequate security to ensure gun safety and the new law will only discourage them from fulfilling their function of presenting an important part of New Zealand’s history.

“Firearms are an important part of New Zealand’s world history and preventing this history from being preserved with unnecessary and complex law changes will result in the loss of an important part of that history for future generations. “

New Zealand police were unable to confirm the cost of a gun dealer license for museums.

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