Municipal bylaws over firearms and hunting must be reasonable, rules Court

Quebec municipalities will likely have to review their firearms and hunting bylaws after a farmer who received a fine for shooting a deer on his property waged a successful legal battle that prompted Quebec Superior Court to strike down a municipal bylaw that prohibits hunting as it ran afoul of provincial and federal legislation.

The decision, one of a handful that examines the extent to which municipalities can regulate the use and possession of weapons on their territories while respecting provincial hunting standards, underlines that Quebec municipalities have the power to pass bylaws over the use of weapons and can add safety rules set out in provincial standards, added the legal pundits. But these measures, while a “complex exercise,” must clearly set out their objectives, the means of enforcement and must be exercised in a reasonable manner without exceeding the legislative framework, added the lawyers.

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