SHOOTERS, Fishers and Farmers Party MLC Rick Mazza says a $415,000 report into firearm controls has found significant weaknesses in the police force’s oversight of guns for the fifth time since 2000.
Mr Mazza, the MLC for Agricultural Region, said the report found that despite almost $9 million being spent since 2014, the licensing and registration system did not allow police to regulate firearms effectively.
“As per the report, staff have expressed a lack of confidence in the L&R system and prefer to use their own spreadsheets to manage licence applications [and] deceased estate firearms and inspections, which increases the risk of errors being made,” he said.
He said the Auditor General found it can take weeks to receive a report from the L&R system and the information received may not be accurate.
Mr Mazza said the system was vulnerable to malicious access and changes to stored information.
“There is logging of access to the L&R application, however the log is not monitored, meaning police may fail to detect unauthorised access,” he added.
“The report said a desktop review of the project management to establish the L&R system found the way it was developed and implemented likely contributed to the existing deficiencies, which proved the system was flawed from the start.
“The massive increase in application fees in recent years, imposed on WA firearm applicants, should translate to a modern platform including a single smartcard licence, department portal applications, shorter processing times, consistent processing and record keeping and reduced cost recovery charges.
Mr Mazza said more investment in another IT upgrade to better serve the community was required.
“Many of the report’s findings have been raised as matters of concern in Parliament by me during the past five years,” he said.