LEGISLATION allowing shooting in NSW national parks and reserves has cleared its first hurdle after upper house MPs passed it by 20 votes to 17.
The changes to the Game and Feral Animal Control Act, brought by the Shooters Party, will now go to the state's lower house.
The Bill will allow recreational hunters to cull feral animals in 79 national parks and reserves, and simply extends existing culling programs of pests such as dogs, cats, pigs and goats.
Critics have raised fears it could open hundreds of parks and reserves to recreational hunters, with NSW Environment Minister Robyn Parker given the power to veto or green-light shooting sites.
NSW Greens MP David Shoebridge said his party had obtained a minor victory during a marathon debate by securing an amendment to disallow hunters onto council land and to prohibit the use of semi-automatic weapons on public land.
"That would have been a historic step backward," Mr Shoebridge said this morning.
Meanwhile in Canberra, Greens senators Lee Rhiannon and Penny Wright said they would move a motion in the Senate this afternoon calling on federal Attorney-General Nicola Roxon to strengthen uniform gun laws across Australia.
"With Premier (Barry) O'Farrell up to his elbows in pro-gun culture there is a role for the Federal Government to step in," she said.
The Greens are hoping Labor senators would also support a motion condemning Mr O'Farrell for opening up NSW national parks to hunting.
"Feral animal management should not be handed over to amateur shooters," Senator Rhiannon said.
During a feisty debate yesterday, Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham was threatened by Shooters Party MP Robert Brown, who later apologised.
"Unfortunately we're in a modern era so I can't take you outside and beat you to death," Mr Brown said in the chamber.
The Shooters Bill is expected to pass the lower house later today.
Read more: http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news...#ixzz1yO1EL1QX
we lost the semi auto fight , ( this round anyway ) but we won 45 million square hectares of land for hunters ( new york state New jersey and Utah i'm told is about the same area) and its the biggest win for the environment and our native flora and fauna in a century ( since the first national park was launched )
now the communist greens and socialist labour groups will try to catch up and nullify all this
if they still have seats in parliament