In a tight state budget that is seeing services and jobs squeezed, the pro-hunting Game Council NSW has been given a more than 60 per cent budget increase in the 2013-14 NSW government budget announced today, an apparent reward to the Shooters Party for their support in the NSW Upper House.
Greens NSW MP and Firearms spokesperson David Shoebridge said:
“This massive budget increase is an apparent reward for the Shooters Party for their ongoing support for the O’Farrell government’s ongoing attacks on working people in NSW.
“The $1.7 million increase in public funding for the Game Council is a 63.5 per cent increase from last year’s funding, and means the pro-gun body is receiving more than twice its average funding over the last decade.
“Since its inception, the Game Council has attracted an average of $2.1 million a year, but in 2014 it is swelling to $4.35 million. This is outrageous considering the organisation was supposed to be self-funding.
“The Game Council was set up by the Labor Party in 2002 to secure the support of the Shooters Party. Both current Shooters Party MPs are former chairmen of the Game Council.
“Evidence of incompetence and negligence has dogged the Game Council from the very beginning. Its governance and structure are currently under review.
“The Shooters Party are well-known for supporting anything the government of the day puts forward, as long as they get what they want – weaker gun controls and more hunting on public land.
“The NSW government needs to end its addiction to the gun lobby, not increase the funding of the failing Game Council,” Mr Shoebridge said.