Grants from the Department of fish and game to ranges
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  1. #1
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    Default Grants from the Department of fish and game to ranges

    Just a note,

    The State of Vermont Department of wildlife is offering significant grant monies to fire arms ranges for improvements and infrastructure.
    The stipulation is for "approved" programs and a commitment to offer PUBLIC access for at least 20 hours per month.

    Hmm.. a range officer .. Sundays (or pick a day) between 11:00 and 4:00. That may prove difficult for our club.

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    So the stipulation is mixed use with normal range activities shuttered while public in on property?
    My club has enough property for biking and hiking and not tons of open space but the shared range here has lots of property and open fields etc.

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    I wonder if the 20 hours could be kids programs like hunter safety and junior rifle stuff?

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    I would like to see hunter safety taught in schools and have school shooting teams, likely never happen.

    I took a Mauser 98 to school to do some machining on it and nobody thought it odd to have a gun walking down the hall.
    Yes in a case and the bolt left home.
    Very different times now.
    Last edited by michiganbuck; 07-28-2021 at 05:31 AM.

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    This could be a good thing if properly supervised. Possible benefits could include:

    Sight-in days for hunters, insuring a better chance for humane game harvesting as an improperly sighted in rifle is more likely to wound.

    Family days to encourage those unfamiliar with firearms to gain some exposure, with perhaps some who are uncomfortable with firearms to see it from a new angle.

    Reducing the sandlot shooting, which can many times be somewhat unsafe.

    There are many others but of course the benefits are balanced with the need for members to donate 5 hours once a week.

    Probably easiest to manage would be 3 general use days and 1 special event per month, or mostly general use with at least 6 special events per year..

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    No need for volunteer labor on public days. Charge enough to cover however many RO's you need and the extra insurance.

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    For sure,the local range has paid ROs,and blowins generally leave $100+ behind for the day.....My yearly range membership costs about $4 a week,or $6 if I add in the SSAA membership,and I shoot free as many times as I like......However ,the virus has played havoc with all the arrangements,and blowins are no longer allowed.

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    That money is likely from the federal Pittman-Robertson program, which has been in effect since 1937. Every time you buy a firearm, ammunition or archery equipment, there is a hidden 11% (10% on handguns) excise tax included. The feds keep a portion of the money collected, and distribute the rest to state fish and game departments, to be used for habitat improvement, public access to shooting ranges, etc. The states make a portion of this money available to private organizations for those purposes.

    The 20 hour per month requirement may have been imposed by the state of Vermont, as I do not believe it is part of the federal guidelines. You might wish to check those.

    It’s a valuable program. My club has within the last ten years twice received grants which allowed us to make significant improvements to our facilities.

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    When I'm in town and Pheasants Forever has a kids event I run a shooting booth. Yes, we even let toddlers shoot at balloons.

    I like to ask the kids "Can you tell us a safety rule." if they don't have one I tell them one and hope the next time they are up to shoot they might remember that rule.

    One little boy came to shoot and I asked him and he said "Yes. Don't shoot the teacher"

    Pheasants are coming back in Michigan from almost extinct.


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