The Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (NSW) Inc. “SSAA NSW” has slammed Gun Control Australia “GCA” for withholding a report which GCA claims supports their latest statements about firearm theft in NSW*.

 SSAA NSW Executive Director Diana Melham said the failure of GCA to so far make their report available implies that GCA has plenty to hide with their claims.

 “GCA claims that 27,000 firearms were stolen between 2007 and 2017, but their report is not publicly available as yet, so we do not know what type of firearms they are referring to,” Mrs Melham said.

 “Are these complete firearms or parts? Are these toys? Are these paintball markers? Are these collectable firearms which have had their firing mechanisms disabled? We do not know because of GCA’s failure to release their report publicly.”

 Mrs Melham said GCA was also accountable for the actions of their friends in advertising the location of firearms to criminals.

 “The release of firearms data by GCA’s allies, The Greens, is a clear breach of privacy as firearms registry data, like any individual’s personal information, needs to be protected for security reasons,” Mrs Melham said.

 “This information is in the hands of criminals who can now target smaller localities and easily identify the homes of licensed law-abiding firearm owners who legally own and store firearms.

 “GCA and the Greens have handed a shopping list to criminals and for what reason?  They will have you believe that the motive is public safety, however this is simply a hypocritical and desperate attempt to prove their baseless theories and push their anti-gun agenda without any concern that their actions are both demonising and risking the safety of the 220,000 licensed, law-abiding firearms owners in NSW.”

 Mrs Melham said GCA should be working for stronger sentences for criminals who commit crimes with illegal firearms rather than targeting law-abiding firearm owners.

 “If GCA truly wants to reduce gun crime, then I challenge both GCA and The Greens to support SSAA NSW’s efforts in seeking increased mandatory penalties for gun crime and increased screening of containers at Australian ports to reduce the number of illegal firearms entering the country,” Mrs Melham said.

 “Rather than engaging in scaremongering, I invite GCA to work with us to achieve fair, workable firearms laws that are based on facts and evidence rather than emotion and hype, and are truly effective in addressing the real problem of illegal firearms and gun crime.”



SSAA NSW will strenuously correct the record for misleading statements from high profile/vocal individuals and/or mainstream media and inform members of our actions.

Shooters Fishers & Farmers Party (SFFP) elected representative Robert Borsak MLC has posted on Facebook yet another public attack on SSAA NSW – this one on 22 February 2018.

Is this the kind of conduct we, as law abiding firearms owners (LAFOs), expect from an elected parliamentarian who is supposed to represent and support all of us?  Here we have a ‘self-appointed’ ‘leader’ of the shooting sports that represents his constituents selectively; whose actions are dividing the sport as well as undermining the efforts of SSAA NSW to unite and work with all pro-firearms organisations.

In the interests of protecting our members, the shooting sports and avoiding further division, the SSAA NSW Board has been reluctant in the past to react to Mr Borsak’s posts.  We do not know if this is a desperate attempt from an ineffective politician to gain control over the biggest, most diverse and successful shooting organisation in NSW with a healthy bank balance and a potential pool of 58,000+ voters.

Whatever his motivations, self-serving or otherwise, it is time to put the facts on the record; something Mr Borsak has not done so far!


Robert Borsak Falsehood #1

 “What ranges have they built?”


  • Our members know that SSAA NSW has built and maintains many high-quality ranges throughout the State.  Indeed, our member feedback indicates that access to ranges is the second highest ranking membership benefit that they appreciate.  SSAA NSW has the “runs on the board” when it comes to facilitating, funding, developing and protecting range facilities in NSW; a record that no other shooting organisation can match.
    • currently owns, and is further developing, three operating range facilities in Forbes, Hay and Scotts Head;
    • has successfully obtained the DA for, and is currently developing, an international-standard range complex in Dubbo that will cater for all SSAA disciplines, will be available for all shooting clubs to utilise, and will incorporate an education facility as part of its final stage;
    • is in the last stage of obtaining a DA for the development of a multi-use range facility at Temora;
    • is currently working on the feasibility for a similar multi-use range facility in Nowra; and
    • has been handed responsibility for solving the issues attached to the development of a multi-use range complex in Guyra.
  • Further, SSAA NSW has committed almost $5 million in range development and improvement through:
    • $806,156 to its Branches and Affiliate Clubs for range development over the past 10 years;
    • $1.52 million for the purchase of land and development of SSAA NSW owned range facilities; and
    • a further $2.57 million allocated for development and improvement of SSAA NSW owned range facilities.
  • SSAA NSW has allocated specialised staff resources specifically for the development and improvement of range facilities as well as the provision of advice and support for its Branches and Affiliate Clubs with their own range development issues, including preparing for, and representation at, range inspections.
  • The SSAA NSW Board, SSAA NSW Branches and Affiliate Clubs have also invested significant funding and volunteer hours into developing, improving and managing the many ranges used and/or owned by them.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #2

“They have spent a lot of time and money on the failed "supplementary pest control program”


  • Not only has the Supplementary Pest Control (SPC) trial program not failed, Mr Borsak and his parliamentary colleague, Robert Brown, both publicly supported SSAA NSW’s involvement.
  • The Natural Resource Commission (NRC) was tasked with independently evaluating the effectiveness, efficiency and social impacts of the 3-year trial of the SPC program.  The NRC’s final evaluation report, which was submitted to the NSW Government in February 2017 and released publicly in December 2017, states:
    • The Commission recommends that the SPC program continue and be expanded beyond the trial phase”;
    • NPWS has capably and professionally managed the SPC trial with the support of the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia NSW”; and
    • “the SPC trial has resulted in an improvement in integrated pest management at participating sites”
  • Both Mr Borsak and Mr Brown publicly supported SSAA NSW’s involvement in the SPC program:
    • In a letter dated 19 November 2013 to SSAA NSW Branches, Mr Borsak wrote “the SFP fully supports the SSAA’s excellent initiative” and also that “ We cannot, and the SFP will not, allow the divisions of decades past to start again”.
    • In a media release attached to that letter, Mr Brown stated “We have to make this work because, if the National Parks trial fails, the future of public land hunting will come under threat”, “Hunters need to make this trial work, the only organisation in NSW with the members and resources to make that happen is SSAA NSW” and finally, “Without SSAA NSW taking this program on, it was doomed to fail, and that would have been a disaster for hunters”.
  • In April 2015, after SSAA NSW published a “correct the record” on Australian Hunting Net (AHN), which contained facts regarding the SPC program and dispelled some mistruths circulated by Mr Borsak, forum readers asked Mr Borsak to substantiate his claims.  To date, he has not posted any response.

One of the most important roles that SSAA NSW performs is to build awareness and acceptance of the shooting sports, including recreational hunting, amongst the general community; our members expect this of SSAA NSW being the peak shooting sports body in NSW.  SSAA NSW’s successful participation in the SPC program shone the spotlight on recreational hunters and the important role they play in conservation, and it opened up other opportunities for recreational hunters to be recognised as important stakeholders in the management of pest animals.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #3

“They reneged on donations to the SFF Federal Party to help get representatives elected to Canberra, despite a resolution of members.”


  • SSAA NSW decided not to donate to the SFFP for its federal election campaign, but it was done in accordance with a resolution of its members, not despite of it.
  • At the 2014 AGM of SSAA NSW, a resolution adopted by an overwhelming majority of our Member Branches overturned any previous resolution to donate funds to the SFFP.
  • The reasons for the decision were detailed in a letter to the SFFP dated 2 June 2014.  These included:
    • whilst the delegates and a significant portion of its members support the SFFP, it was widely recognised among SSAA NSW’s members that the two upper house representatives were not connecting with the SSAA NSW membership;
    • the perception that the actions of these representatives had done more harm than good for the sport;
    • disappointment with the misleading information being circulated and published by SFFP representatives, candidates and employees;
    • the public campaign to criticise and undermine SSAA NSW by these same people and its detrimental effect on the relationship between SSAA NSW and the SFFP; and
    • the SFFP had not promoted the financial and promotional support already provided by SSAA NSW.
  • In that same letter, SSAA NSW offered in-kind support to promote the SFFP to its members in the lead up to the 2015 NSW election.  This included circulation of the SFFP policy statement to all members in February 2015, distribution of the SFFP “how to vote” card to members in March 2015, and assistance with the coordination of polling booth volunteers on election day.  In December 2014, the SFFP rejected our offer.
  • The SFFP requested and SSAA NSW agreed to approve the insertion of an election leaflet with the Australian Shootermagazine for SSAA NSW members in March 2015. 
    • The SFFP was the only political party granted this privilege by SSAA NSW. 
    • In return, the SFFP was to cease their negative campaign and attacks against SSAA NSW and the SPC program, the content was not to include any negativity towards SSAA NSW and the SFFP was required to cover the cost of printing and pay the insertion costs charged by SSAA National. 
    • The insert was circulated as agreed despite the SFFP not honouring their part of the agreement to cease attacking SSAA NSW and the SPC program.
  • The SSAA NSW’s “correct the record” post on Australian Hunting Net (AHN) in April 2015 also contained the facts regarding these issues.  As mentioned above, while some forum readers asked Mr Borsak to substantiate his claims, he has made no response to date.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #4

“They have failed to expand the St Mary's facility and its business model”


  • SSAA NSW provided a significant amount of the initial funding ($1.25 million) for the purchase and development of the St Marys Indoor Shooting Centre (SMISC).  A large portion of this loan is still to be repaid.
  • In the early days of the SMISC, there was a lack of attention to good business practice, a propensity to “cut corners”, both before and after the fire of 2000.  This has meant that successive management and Boards have worked hard and invested heavily to correct the problems inherited as a result of the past substandard practices utilised when the SMISC was first developed and remodelled.
  • Through the hard work and investment of the SSAA Pty Ltd Board and SMISC staff, the SMISC is the largest and most successful indoor range in New South Wales.  As well as providing 7 day a week access to range facilities for competitions, practice and sighting in, it incorporates a firearms dealership and retail outlet where all SSAA members receive a discount, the largest safe storage facility in Sydney, extensive training options including safe handling for pistol, longarms and R Licence accreditation, a Junior Development Program, organised competitions, and try shooting. The SMISC facilities and services are utilised by a number of other shooting clubs as well as government agencies.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #5

“SSAA nominees who have no or little if any life experience in shooting, let alone hunting”


  • Both of the SSAA NSW staff members appointed to the Stakeholder Groups of the Firearms Registry (FAR) started shooting and hunting in their early teens and are actively involved in both target shooting and hunting activities; and both own and shoot rifles, shotguns and pistols.  They are Safe Shooting Instructors, GLU Hunter Leap Trainers delivering R Licence accreditation, and range officers.  They both have years of experience with operating firearms dealerships and commercial ranges, as well as being armourers.
  • Of the current 8 elected Board members, all are hunters, all are involved in target shooting, and all have positions on the committees of their local SSAA NSW Branches.  Some are also collectors and involved with SSAA NSW Affiliate Clubs.

 SSAA NSW is the largest and most diverse shooting body in NSW and it is also the only shooting body able to offer its members opportunities to participate in all of the many and varied activities encompassed within the shooting sports (including target shooting for rifle, pistol and shotgun, hunting and collecting).  This organisational diversity coupled with the depth and breadth of experience held by its Board members and staff means SSAA NSW is recognised as the only organisation equipped to credibly represent the shooting sports and LAFOs.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #6

“The SSAA NSW have gone out of their way to not only distance themselves from recreational hunting, but actively destroy it in NSW”


  • Recreational hunting and conservation is a core member activity and the SSAA NSW has done more for recreational hunting in NSW than any other organisation, including the SFFP and the Federation of Hunting Clubs that it controls, by allocating specialised staff resources to facilitate and grow access to recreational hunting for members, as well as provide professional and credible representation in this area.
    • offers training and accreditation for recreational hunters through its H&C model, which in turn provides access to exclusive opportunities available only to SSAA members;
    • established partnerships and programs with a number of government and private landholders to provide assistance with pest animal management through its accredited members, and the credibility and success of these initiatives continues to open up yet more recreational hunting opportunities;
    • is the Game Licensing Unit’s (GLU) largest Approved Hunting Organisation, thus providing its members with access to the R Licence and hunting in state forests;
    • is an accredited Hunter LEAP Provider and provides the opportunity for its Branches to come under its umbrella and be part of a state-wide network of accredited Hunter LEAP Trainers;
    • is building capacity and capability within its Branches to enable them to also provide the training and accreditation as well as access to recreational hunting opportunities at a local level; and
    • entered into a partnership with NPWS to provide trained and accredited volunteer hunters to participate in a 3-year trial of the successful SPC program.  The final evaluation report completed by the NRC has recommended that the program be continued and expanded.
  • The SSAA Farmer Assist program has been positively recognised by farming groups, in various media reports, and within the NRC’s report following the state-wide review of pest animal management.  This program is the only one of its type offered by a NSW hunting club and is only available to SSAA members.
  • SSAA NSW is currently applying for Registered Training Organisation (RTO) accreditation and once granted will be one of the very few organisations able to provide professional qualifications in pest management.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #7

“All that seems to have happened is that they have awarded themselves increased wages and stipends over the last ten years”


  • Members of the SSAA NSW Board and the committees of its Member Branches and Affiliate Clubs are unpaid volunteers, and SSAA NSW’s employment costs are much lower than the benchmarks for the Not for Profit (NFP) sector.
  • Members of the SSAA NSW Board and its Branch committees are volunteers and often serve SSAA NSW to some detriment to their private work and incomes, as do many of the Branch and Affiliate Club volunteers.  To attend meetings and other SSAA activities, many of them give up annual leave days or have to pay additional staff to cover for them at their work.
  • For SSAA NSW Board members, the only recompense available is the honorarium as determined each year by delegates at the SSAA NSW AGM, and not by the Board itself.
  • Employee remuneration within SSAA NSW is independently benchmarked on a regular basis and all employees are paid in accordance with the benchmarking recommendations.
  • An Australian Bureau of Statistics report on the NFP sector identified labour costs as the most significant expense, if not the largest expense, in any NFP organisation.  That report stated that average labour cost for all NFPs measured was 48% of their income and 50% of their expenses.  By comparison, the SSAA NSW staffing costs in 2016 were 33.5% of income and 39.4% of expenditure; well below the NFP sector averages.
  • Many of the employees of SSAA NSW also volunteer their personal time, out of work hours, to coordinate and/or assist at SSAA NSW and Branch activities.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #8

“an annual commitment of about $45,000 a year (I believe), for three years to the Devil Ark program. They called it a “memorandum of understanding” to avoid their own Constitution clause that limits donations to $5000. Devil Ark however refers to it as a donation?”


  • SSAA NSW has not and does not act in contravention or avoidance of its Constitution.  The SSAA NSW Constitution explicitly mandates participation and involvement in public relations projects and this is separate to the provisions dealing with gifts and donations.
  • The aims, objects and purposes specified in the SSAA NSW Constitution include the promotion of the sport and specifically, that SSAA NSW is “to promote and improve the sport of shooting in the state of New South Wales through public relations projects”.
  • Unlike any donation or gift arrangement, SSAA NSW is an active project partner of Devil Ark and, while some monetary sponsorship is provided, SSAA NSW also participates through on the ground pest management, in exchange for specific promotional and public relations opportunities.  SSAA NSW can and does leverage these promotional and public relations opportunities to promote the important role recreational hunters play in conservation, amongst the general community.
  • This partnership with Devil Ark has raised the profile of both SSAA NSW and recreational hunters amongst conservation groups and specialist scientists.  Even the Australian Threatened Species Commissioner recognised publicly the role of SSAA in conservation activities at a Devil Ark dinner attended by more than 300 from the conservation and scientific communities.
  • Our relationship with Devil Ark has delivered an exclusive arrangement whereby SSAA NSW coordinates the pest management activities for Devil Ark, their new initiative Aussie Ark, and surrounding landholdings; delivering yet another hunting opportunity for our members.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #9

“I am told that Constitutionally the SSAA NSW now is in fact not the sum of its members, but actually just the members of the NSW Board…I believe this “interpretation” is based on advice from their solicitors.”


  • Under the SSAA NSW Constitution, only the Member Branches hold all the voting rights and membership privileges, while the Board has all the duties and responsibilities of the association.
  • The SSAA NSW Constitution prescribes that, in any general meeting, only the Member Branches have voting rights.  The members of the Board do not have any voting rights.
  • There are many provisions in the SSAA NSW Constitution dealing with the duties and responsibilities of its Board, including that:
    • the Board is responsible for the management of the affairs of SSAA NSW;
    • the Board is responsible for ensuring SSAA NSW’s continued compliance with the Constitution as well as all relevant acts and laws, and
    • the members of the Board must adhere to the Code of Conduct as prescribed in the Constitution.
  • While Mr Borsak did not disclose the context in which those statements are made, SSAA NSW did seek and obtain legal advice as to whether a former member of the Board who contravened the Code of Conduct and violated his various legal obligations to SSAA NSW, is accountable to SSAA NSW as a whole, or only to all or selected Member Branches as he asserted.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #10

“I hear that the Sydney Branch are very worried that the SSAA NSW wants to move in on them, take them over and swallow them and their cash and shareholdings!”


  • While SSAA NSW do not know what worries trouble SSAA Sydney Branch and what Mr Borsak may have heard, SSAA NSW does not want to, and cannot, take over any Member Branch.
  • All Member Branches of SSAA NSW, including Sydney Branch, are their own separate legal entity protected by their own constitution and their status as an incorporated association under the Associations Incorporation Act 2009 (NSW).
  • The only way a Member Branch can be dissolved is by an extraordinary resolution that requires at least 90% of their members in attendance to vote in favour.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #11

“Further, the “Farm Assist” program, its a national thing, but NSW was last to take it up, its a flawed concept and proves that SSAA NSW don't understand hunting or the relationship that hunters have with property owners.”


  • The Farmer Assist program is not only successful, but has generated tangible benefits for SSAA NSW and its members.
  • The Farmer Assist program was identified by the NRC in its report on the state-wide review of pest animal management, Shared Problem, Shared Solutions, as an example of a community-based program that is designed to foster relationships between landholders and recreational hunters. 
  • In 2015, SSAA NSW was invited and joined the Farmer Assist program. 
  • Most notably, the Farmer Assist program:
    • has been featured on the ABC Landline program;
    • was promoted in an ABC article as the solution to the deer problem in the ACT;
    • was the subject of an editorial piece published in The Land newspaper’s “Firearms” feature in 2016; and
    • has been endorsed by farming organisations including AgForce, Primary Producers SA, and WA Farmers.
  • NSW Farmers, an important constituent group for the SFFP, have undertaken to promote the program to their members and, as part of its continued relationship development with NSW Farmers, SSAA NSW exhibited and promoted Farmer Assist at their conference in 2017.
  • Farmer Assist was the impetus for the North Coast Local Land Services’ (LLS) approach to SSAA NSW for the development of a locally based program to provide recreational hunters to conduct pest control activities as part of the Hastings Wild Deer Management Strategy.  This in turn sparked interest from other LLS regions who have expressed an interest in working with SSAA NSW on pest animal management projects.  These initiatives have not only facilitated better relationships between SSAA NSW and other stakeholders, but also provided substantial opportunities for recreational hunters.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #12

“Questioning is now heavily controlled at AGM's, and requires questions to be put in writing up to 21 days before AGM, due to tough questions in the past that highlighted the boards poor management.”


  • It has been a constitutional requirement for decades that specific agenda items for the AGM are to be submitted in writing well before the AGM, and this is due to:
    • the notice requirements for special resolutions in the current and past Associations Incorporation Act; and
    • the desire to ensure every Member Branch has the same opportunity to raise issues before the AGM. 
  • However, the “general business” agenda item at each AGM has provided the Member Branches with an opportunity to raise any topic or question before the whole meeting, and this continues to be the case.  At every AGM, the agenda has always included a “general business” section, during which topics and questions can be raised from the floor by delegates of every Member Branch.

Robert Borsak Falsehood #13

“they would advertise in daily, weekly and biweekly country newspapers in support of the Nationals at the very time we are trying to win the Orange by election”


  • SSAA NSW has always shown support for pro-firearms and pro-SSAA NSW politicians and candidates.  SSAA NSW did place an advertisement in support of a pro-firearms Police Minister at around the time of the Orange by-election.  The advertisement was state-wide and not directed at the Orange by-election, in which the Police Minister was not a candidate.
  • SSAA NSW has already stated on its website and in its publications to members that the advertisement was to show support for a pro-firearms Police Minister who:
    • was the only state or territory Police Minister to argue against the re-categorisation of lever action shotguns;
    • is on public record as supporting LAFOs; and
    • stated publicly that legally owned firearms are not the issue, but illegal guns are the issue, when it comes to gun-related crime.
  • For the NSW by-elections held in October 2017, SSAA NSW provided support to pro-firearms and pro-SSAA NSW candidates by way of a print and online media campaign.  To that end:
    • all candidates, including those from the SFFP, were given an opportunity to answer the same questions relating to firearms ownership and use, SSAA NSW and its activities, shooting ranges, recreational hunting and evidenced-based firearms laws;
    • the full responses (as well as non-responses) were circulated via all our communication platforms to inform members and the wider community of LAFOs; and
    • the responses also formed the basis of a “scorecard” advertisement that was published in a number of local publications during the week leading up to the by-elections. 
  • For the 2019 NSW State election, SSAA NSW will be again providing support to pro-firearm and pro-SSAA NSW candidates; ensuring its members and other LAFOs are kept fully informed on the firearm related policies and views of candidates and parties running for election.


SSAA NSW continues to work and build relationships with other shooting organisations, and its position is clearly on record that:

  • all pro-firearms bodies need to work together to form a strong united voice, and
  • we will support pro-firearms and pro-SSAA NSW politicians and parties, which will include the SFFP if it would be pro-firearms and pro-SSAA NSW.

In late 2017, SSAA NSW requested to meet the elected representatives in the Legislative Council whose salaries and allowances are paid not by the SFFP but by NSW taxpayers, but they refused to meet with us.  This was surprising to SSAA NSW, as Mr Borsak has pointed out in his post how important SSAA NSW is to the constituents of the SFFP as the largest pro-firearms organisation in NSW.


Firearms laws are again in the news after another criminal act resulted in a tragic school shooting in the United States. SSAA NSW sat down with the ABC to discuss the effect of firearms laws in Australia and their ineffectiveness in reducing gun crime, and we were vindicated in our stance. Have a listen by clicking here - the story starts at 5.36 minutes.


It's that time of year again when SSAA NSW holds the annual 5 Stand State Titles!

This year we head down to pay a visit to Hay branch, with the competition starting at 9:30am each day.

Nominations are being accepted for Opens, Ladies/Veterans and Juniors.

Entry fees are: Open - $130 Ladies/Veterans - $110 Juniors - $65

Grades: Open: AA, A, B, C
Other: Junior (U15yrs) & (U18yrs), Ladies, Veterans (60+yrs)

Please remember that proof of age may be required.

Competitors without a SSAA NSW 5 Stand grade will be graded at the end of the event.

For more information, click here or call Jesse Thomson on 0457 433 419, Jan Jacka on 0417 459 053 or Greg Allen 0409 444 955.

SPC - Final Evaluation Report

In February of this year the Natural Resources Commission submitted its final report on the National Parks & Wildlife Service Supplementary Pest Control trial. After much anticipation the report has finally been publicly released and is available to view here


Read more: SPC - Final...

Download SSAA NSW Standard Branch Constitution here

NSW Shooter now online