It was just three years ago that Canada scrapped its federal long-gun registry. But last December, Quebec decided to give it a go and announced plans to create its own registry for non-restricted firearms. “We will be able to know where is the gun and who owns the gun,” said Public Security Minister Pierre Moreau.
It’s estimated that it will cost roughly $17 million to start the registry and another $5 million annually to operate. Gun owners who fail to register would receive penalties ranging from $500 to $5,000.
But the measure, which was once considered a given, has seen opposition steadily climb. Canada’s National Firearms Association, hunters, sport shooters and collectors have all lent their support. There has been growing division among political parties. And a petition calling for the bill to be scrapped has garnered more than 41,000 signatures and is expected to present in mid-March.