The department of Canadian Heritage spent $1,024 studying how to dispose of a firearm, which police will do for free, according to records obtained by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.
“Most Canadians are happy when something is free, but these bureaucrats somehow managed to turn a free service into a $1,000-bill for taxpayers,” said Franco Terrazzano, Federal Director of the CTF. “Hopefully the bureaucrats at Canadian Heritage don’t play roll up the rim and turn a free coffee into a $10,000-expense.”
In 2019, the federal government launched an audit of the Canadian Conservation Institute and the Canadian Heritage Information Network, a pair of agencies within Canadian Heritage.
During the audit, government employees came across an unloaded Remington Model 870 Wingmaster shotgun locked in a vault at their Ottawa office. A former employee used the firearm for protection while traveling through Northern Canada.
The agencies wanted to dispose of the firearm and launched an audit to study how to get rid of the gun.
Management at Canadian Heritage decided to ask the Ottawa police to pick up the shotgun. The police eventually removed the firearm in September of 2019. But not before the bureaucrats spent $1,024 on the audit, which included $230 to translate the final report into French.
The Ottawa Police Service confirmed to the CTF that there is no charge when a firearm is turned over to police. All it asks is that members of the public call ahead to schedule a time for the police to pick up the firearm instead of bringing the firearm or ammunition into police stations.
Cassandra Parker, the owner of K.K.S. Tactical Supplies in Prince George, told the CTF her shop would have bought the firearm for $400 to $600, depending on its age and condition.
“They could have contacted a local firearms store and, provided that the person bringing it had a PAL (Possession and Acquisition License), could have had the firearm sold for a profit or they could have also included the firearm in a government auction sale,” said Parker. “Not only are they spending the cost of the audit, but also the lost revenue they could have received from selling the firearm legally.”
“Canadian Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez needs to hold someone accountable for this obvious waste of taxpayers’ money,” said Terrazzano.