shooting ranges

Proposed Triton College Shared Police Training Facility Moves Forward

Chicago-area readers may remember me blogging last summer about future concealed-carry classroom and range instruction possibly being offered at a proposed shared police training facility at Triton College, a two-year community college located in west suburban River Grove. I wrote on July 2, 2014:

And here’s something I caught on the Forest Park Review website from earlier this June that might interest local law enforcement and nearby residents seeking concealed-carry training. Jean Lotus reported:

Interest is growing among 23 Triton College feeder communities for a shared police training facility and shooting range hosted at the River Grove campus.

The community college recently sent a survey to police chiefs and village managers in 25 different towns asking about a possible shared facility, and almost all of them responded that they were open to discussing the possibility…

The current proposal is a “tactical training facility” located on the Triton campus with a state-of-the-art 24-position shooting range…

Training on judgment laser shooting and pursuit driving were just some of the requests made by survey respondents.

Lotus added:

Sixty-four percent of the departments surveyed also asked for mock streetscape technology. Other suggestions were leadership training, firearms training from a vehicle, felony traffic stop scenarios, water-based courses, tactical room entry, building searches and rapid deployment training.

[Forest Park Mayor Anthony] Calderone pointed out Triton could even do concealed-carry training for civilians

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Well, Deborah Kadin published this update on the Review website on April 7:

An idea that sprang last summer from conversations between three area village presidents is nearing reality as a number of communities are assessing whether to join in to pay for a state-of-the-art regional shooting range at Triton College.

Draft copies of an intergovernmental agreement, which spells out construction and operating costs as well as many other details about the facility, went out near the end of March to 14 likely participants, including Forest Park, River Forest, Oak Park and Riverside. Triton College also will be taking part…

The range being contemplated is a 6,160-square-foot facility with eight shooting lanes. The cost is estimated at $2 million and will be funded through a bond issue paid off over 20 years…

Looking over the draft intergovernmental agreement (.pdf auto-download starting p. 261- hat tip Village of River Forest), under “6. Additional Usage”:

Triton College may, based upon demand and available funding, offer training courses as required under the Illinois Firearm Conceal Carry Act, 403 ILCS 66/1 et seq. In the event such classes are offered, all firearms and ammunition shall be provided, housed and maintained on site. No member of the public shall be permitted to bring a personal firearm on the Triton College campus. All fees collected for such classes shall be allocated in a manner that first all College costs are recovered and any remaining funds shall be paid toward the maintenance of the Premises…

Outside of Triton concealed-carry instruction for members of the public- I’m assuming that’s why “No member of the public shall be permitted to bring a personal firearm on the Triton College campus” was inserted where it was in the draft IGA (though I could be mistaken)- access by the general public is restricted. From that draft:

At no point shall the Premises be made available for public usage or public training sessions.

Stay tuned…

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Kadin, Deborah. “Costs tallied for Triton shooting range.” Forest Park Review. 7 Apr. 2015. (http://www.forestparkreview.com/News/Articles/4-7-2015/Costs-tallied-for-Triton-shooting-range/). 23 Apr. 2015.

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Proposed Niles, Illinois, Gun Shop And Range Back In Court On April 14

Sorry about the delayed posting this week. While I would have liked to have celebrated an extended St. Patrick’s Day weekend here in the Chicago area (and wrote), a number of personal matters required my attention instead.

Speaking of the Chicagoland area, remember when I blogged last summer about that gun shop and range possibly opening up around my old stomping grounds on the Northwest Side? Last I heard, the proposed facility at 6143 Howard Street in Niles was being sued by a gun “control” group calling themselves People for a Safer Society. I noted on November 13:

As for the new gun shop/range? Alex Hernandez reported on The Bugle website on October 24:

People for a Safer Society are suing to block Sportsman’s Club and Firearms Training Academy from opening in Niles.

“The area immediately surrounding [Sportsman’s] is replete with schools, religious facilities, children’s recreations facilities, and other non-gun-related businesses and entities, many or all of which are within walking distance of the Howard Property and the proposed gun range,” said the suit filed by People for a Safer Society last Friday.

Back in July trustees voted 4-1 to grant Sportsman’s a special use permit to open an 1,800-square-foot firing range and 2,500 square feet of retail space at 6143 W. Howard St…

The suit claims that if Sportsman’s opens the business would endanger Niles by allowing “easy access for buying a gun for anyone in or near Niles and the surrounding villages and communities,” that Sportsman’s gun sales “would result in the feeding of crime guns to the City of Chicago,” and finally a fear that the store could increase the risk of suicides and mass shootings in the area…

That’s the last I heard of the Niles gun shop and shooting range- until this afternoon. Tom Robb reported on the website of Journal & Topics Newspapers (northwest Chicago suburbs) last week:

A significant ruling, in the case of anti-gun activists challenging Niles village trustees’ approval of a gun shop and shooting range, could come next month. It could end the case, send it to trial or add another party to the lawsuit.

At issue in a ruling, expected Tuesday, Apr. 14, is whether the challenge to the special use permit would be “facial” or “as applied.”

Robb explained later in the article:

In their motion to dismiss the suit, Niles attorneys wrote, “An applied challenge represents a plaintiff’s protest against how a statute was applied in a particular context… while a facial challenge represents a plaintiff’s contention that a statute is incapable of constitutional application in any context.”

Because the case could not withstand a facial challenge, village attorneys say in their motion that the case should be dismissed.

People For A Safer Society attorney Anthony Hind said he believes the standard in the gun shop case should rest on the “as applied” standard, based on long-standing state law, and that it should move forward…

There’s more to this legal stuff, which you can read over on the Des Plaines-based paper’s website here.

Survival And Prosperity wishes 6143 Howard Partners Inc. the best of luck on April 14.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Latest On Proposed Niles, Triton College Firearm Training Facilities

Last Wednesday I blogged about a proposed gun store and shooting range in the northwest Chicago suburb of Niles hitting a snag. Here’s the latest, courtesy of the Illinois State Rifle Association website on June 30:

URGENT ALERT – YOUR ACTION REQUIRED BLOOMBERG MOMS MAKE NILES, IL “GROUND ZERO” IN NATIONAL EFFORT TO CLOSE GUN SHOPS AND BAN RANGES

THE BIG ANTI-GUNNER LIE: “gun shops and ranges are dangerous launching points for armed attacks on schools, malls and the elderly.”

SITUATION: A team of entrepreneurs is attempting to construct and operate a gun shop and pistol range in Niles, Illinois. The purpose of the range and gun shop would be to better serve law-abiding firearm owners in the northwest suburbs. The shop and range proposal has already passed out of committee by a 6-1 vote. However, the proposal must be passed by the full village council in order for the range to open.

THREAT: A Chicago-based extremist gun control group affiliated with the Bloomberg Moms is attempting to block the construction and operation of the range and gun shop in Niles. Backed by $50 million in Bloomberg’s anti-gun war chest, the Moms are threatening political harm to local officials who support the proposed gun shop and range. This is part of a nationwide effort by the Moms to abolish private firearm ownership by shutting down all ranges and gun shops. If you care about freedom, you must help stop these radical gun-haters here and now.

ACTION REQUIRED: The Niles Village Board will be meeting soon to vote on whether or not the range will be allowed. It’s vitally important that you be there during the vote to show your support for the range. The Bloomberg Moms will certainly be there to attack the 2nd Amendment and demand that your gun rights be taken away from you. You need to be there, in Niles, to stand up and defend your rights along with the rights of millions of other Americans.

Date: Monday, July 7,2014 Time: 7:00 PM (be there by 6:15 to get a good seat) Location: Niles Village Hall, 1000 Civic Center Drive, Niles, IL 60714

PREPAREDNESS: The Bloomberg Moms are determined radicals who will go to great lengths to attack you and the 2nd Amendment. Be prepared vigorously defend your rights. Do not let these people get the upper hand in the meeting – actively challenge any attack on your right to keep and bear arms. There is no compromise. There is no common ground. It’s all or nothing in support of our Constitution!

Remember, only you can stop the antigunners. If you don’t stand up to them now, it may be all over. …

The “Bloomberg Moms.” Too funny.

And here’s something I caught on the Forest Park Review website from earlier this June that might interest local law enforcement and nearby residents seeking concealed-carry training. Jean Lotus reported:

Interest is growing among 23 Triton College feeder communities for a shared police training facility and shooting range hosted at the River Grove campus.

The community college recently sent a survey to police chiefs and village managers in 25 different towns asking about a possible shared facility, and almost all of them responded that they were open to discussing the possibility…

The current proposal is a “tactical training facility” located on the Triton campus with a state-of-the-art 24-position shooting range…

Training on judgment laser shooting and pursuit driving were just some of the requests made by survey respondents. Lotus added:

Sixty-four percent of the departments surveyed also asked for mock streetscape technology. Other suggestions were leadership training, firearms training from a vehicle, felony traffic stop scenarios, water-based courses, tactical room entry, building searches and rapid deployment training.

[Forest Park Mayor Anthony] Calderone pointed out Triton could even do concealed-carry training for civilians

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Stay tuned…

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Source:

Lotus, Jean. “Proposed Triton cop training facility gains steam.” Forest Park Review. 10 June 2014. (http://www.forestparkreview.com/News/Articles/6-10-2014/Proposed-Triton-cop-training-facility-gains-steam/). 2 July 2014.

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Proposed Niles Gun Shop And Range Hits A Snag

While I was away from the blog, I heard a new gun shop and shooting range might be opening in the northwest Chicago suburb of Niles, near my old stomping grounds in the city.

But according to various news outlets today, the project has hit a snag.

From the WGN web site:

Village Board members were going to vote on the gun shop’s permit Tuesday night, but they sent the measure back to the zoning board for further discussion.

The zoning board will hold a hearing on July 7.

Reporter Tom Robb added over on the Journal & Topics Newspapers website:

Niles officials recently changed their zoning code to place gun related businesses in the industrial area of the village. Opponents say the proposed gun shop at 6143 Howard St. would provide easy access to guns and would be close to several schools, in some cases within blocks, recreational locations geared toward children, residential and educational centers for children with developmental disabilities and at least one bar…

“Opponents say the proposed gun shop at 6143 Howard St. would provide easy access to guns…”

I wonder what serves as the basis for “opponents” making that “easy access” claim?

Is it some perceived facility design flaw? Or do they think anyone can just waltz right into an Illinois gun shop, buy a firearm, and take it home with them the same day?

If so, they’ve obviously never bothered to educate themselves regarding the process for purchasing a gun from such a shop here in the “Land of Lincoln.”

You see, there’s this thing called a “waiting period.” Plus an FBI NICS background check that needs to be passed. Not to mention an initial background check performed by the Illinois State Police when the required Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card is applied for.

“Easy access?” I don’t think so.

Robb noted the issue could come back before Niles trustees in late July.

Stay tuned…

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Sources:

“New Niles Gun Shop on Hold.” WGN. 25 June 2014. (http://wgntv.com/2014/06/25/new-niles-gun-shop-on-hold/). 25 June 2014.

Robb, Tom. “Proposed Niles Gun Range, Shop Shot Back To Zoning Board.” Journal & Topics Newspaper. 25 June 2014. (http://www.journal-topics.com/news/article_3a9794ac-fca1-11e3-bef7-0017a43b2370.html). 25 June 2014.

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Wednesday, June 25th, 2014 Firearms, Government, Public Safety, Training No Comments

Illinois Senate Democrats Don’t Have Enough Votes To Pass Gun ‘Control’ Bills

Gun rights supporters were victorious in Illinois today as voting on two gun “control” bills that Senate Democrats were trying to push through the Illinois General Assembly “lame duck” session were scrapped. Kurt Erickson reported on the website of the Pantagraph (Bloomington, Illinois) website this afternoon:

There’s not enough support in the Illinois Senate to impose tough new restrictions on semiautomatic weapons and high-capacity ammunition clips.

In a setback for gun control advocates in the wake of the murder of school children in Connecticut, the Illinois Senate was poised to adjourn Thursday without voting on two pieces of legislation aimed at limiting access to certain kinds of weapons and bullets.

Although the two proposals could emerge again when the legislature reconvenes next week, the lack of action shows the General Assembly remains divided on how to balance Second Amendment issues.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Brian Brueggemann added on the website of the Belleville News-Democrat (Belleville, Illinois):

Senate Democrat leaders announced Thursday they did not have enough votes to pass their measures on the two issues.

“It is clear that we will need bipartisan support in order to take floor votes on gun safety and marriage equality this week. We will take some time to work on these important issues to advance them in the near future,” the Senate Democratic caucus said in a statement Thursday afternoon.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Meanwhile, Illinois residents with at least half a brain are perplexed as to why these lawmakers aren’t focusing on more pressing issues- like the State of Illinois marching headlong towards insolvency with $8 billion in unpaid bills and a $96.8 billion pension funding gap.

By Christopher E. Hill, Editor
Survival And Prosperity (http://www.survivalandprosperity.com)

Sources:

Erickson, Kurt. “Ill. Senate drops controversial gun control measures.” Panatagraph. 3 Jan. 2013. (http://www.pantagraph.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/ill-senate-drops-controversial-gun-control-measures/article_f7d63ade-55de-11e2-b0f0-0019bb2963f4.html). 3 Jan. 2013.

Brueggemann, Brian. “Illinois Senate Dems put off votes on gun ban, gay marriage.” Belleville News-Democrat. 3 Jan. 2013. (http://www.bnd.com/2013/01/03/2446276/senate-dems-put-off-votes-on-gun.html). 3 Jan. 2013.

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Illinois Senate Democrats Push To Ban ‘At A Minimum, All Detachable-Magazine Semi-Automatic Rifles And Pistols’

Last night I blogged about Democrats in the Illinois Senate trying to push through gun ‘control’ legislation during the “lame duck” session of the Illinois General Assembly (welcome to the world of politics in Madiganistan). There was some initial confusion in the mainstream media about what was to be banned and registered, but by last night the National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action clarified exactly what it was Illinois Senate Democrats were demanding. From the NRA-ILA website this morning:

Illinois: Gun and Magazine Ban and Registration Schemes Pass in Senate Public Health Committee Tonight in Springfield

If you own a semi-automatic firearm or detachable magazine, they may be banned, taxed, and registered and you could easily become a felon unless you act NOW

Anti-gun legislators led by Senate President John Cullerton and backed by Governor Patrick Quinn (D) substituted and passed sweeping draconian gun and magazine bans in the Senate Public Health Committee today. House Bill 1263, amended to include a ban on many commonly owned firearms passed in this committee by a 6 to 4 vote. House Bill 815, which was amended to include a magazine ban and shooting range restrictions, passed by a 6 to 3 vote. Additionally, amendments have been filed to remove the hunting exception and could be introduced and considered on the Senate floor tomorrow. These actions prove once again that Chicago politicians seem more focused on creating new classes of criminals out of law-abiding citizens than dealing effectively with their current violent crime problems.

New amendments have been introduced which add some specifics to the time limits for registration of previously owned firearms and magazines, and set the fees to register firearms and magazines. These amendments will be heard in the Executive Committee tomorrow morning at 11am. Both bills are expected to be heard on the floor of the Senate tomorrow afternoon for their third and final vote, and this is where the real fight will take place to maintain your Second Amendment rights and defeat Senate President Cullerton’s anti-gun agenda. It is imperative that you contact your state Senator IMMEDIATELY to express your opposition to House Bills 815 and 1263 and any additional anti-gun amendments.

Among other things, House Bill 815 would:

– Prohibit anyone without a FOID card from using a commercial shooting range, which in many cases would make it impossible to introduce new shooters to the safe and responsible use of firearms.

– Grant the State Police broad discretion to impose design, construction and operation standards that could shut down most commercial shooting ranges.

– Ban possession of magazines and other feeding devices that hold more than ten rounds of ammunition. A “grandfather clause” would require registration by owners of such devices and give the State Police discretion to impose and charge fees. Registration would require “proof of ownership” that could be impossible for most people to provide, and even registered owners could not transfer magazines within Illinois, except to an heir or a licensed dealer. Transfers of “grandfathered magazines” would have to be reported to the ISP.

– Violations of this magazine ban would be a felony. Failure to report theft or loss of a magazine would be a misdemeanor until the third violation, which would be a felony.

House Bill 1263 would:

Ban, at a minimum, all detachable-magazine semi-automatic rifles and pistols. Remington 7400 deer rifles, Ruger 10/22 squirrel guns, Glocks, 1911s, etc. This ban would include about 80% of handguns now sold in the U.S.

– Possibly ban all semi-automatic rifles and even revolvers or single-shot pistols with the capacity to accept muzzle brakes or compensators.

– Ban “assault weapon attachments,” so possession of a thumbhole stock, a pistol grip,or a fore-end (a “shroud” that “partially or completely encircles the barrel”) would be a crime even if you didn’t possess a firearm.

– Ban all .50 BMG rifles.

– Contains “grandfather” provisions that would require registration by owners of devices and give the State Police discretion to impose and charge fees. Registration would require “proof of ownership.”

– Create felony penalties for violation of this ban on guns or attachments.

– Create lost and stolen penalties that would criminalize victims of gun theft.

Anti-gun politicians are attempting to sacrifice your constitutional rights as a scapegoat for the criminal acts of violence in Chicago by gangs and drug dealers. Don’t let them succeed in banning your firearms or magazines as an excuse for stopping criminals from misusing them. Criminals — by definition — violate laws, especially gun control laws, including often: murder, rape, robbery, drug-dealing, gang violence, firearm theft, carrying concealed firearms without a license/permit, federal gun-free school zones. They do not obey gun bans, register their firearms, or get subjected to any gun control schemes (like the lone state ban on carrying concealed firearms for self-defense) that only affect and penalize law-abiding citizens like you. Your telephone calls TODAY will determine the outcome of this very serious assault on your Second Amendment rights.

The NRA-ILA will continue to send legislative updates as details become available. However, it is of the utmost importance that you act NOW to stop this gun and magazine ban. Call your state Senator IMMEDIATELY and express your opposition to banning firearms or magazines and urge them to vote against House Bills 815 and 1263.

To reach the main line for the Illinois General Assembly, please call 217-782-2000.

Contact information for your state legislators can be found by clicking here.

(Editor’s note: Bold added to Ban, at a minimum, all detachable-magazine semi-automatic rifles and pistols)

By Christopher E. Hill, Editor
Survival And Prosperity (http://www.survivalandprosperity.com)

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Resource Of The Week: WhereToShoot.org

This past Tuesday I blogged about the National Shooting Sports Foundation and their First Shots introduction to shooting program.

But did you know the NSSF also runs a website that helps firearm owners find places where they can shoot?

Enter WhereToShoot.org. From the website:

WhereToShoot.org is the web’s most comprehensive directory of shooting ranges. Managed by the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the firearms industry’s trade association, this site is updated frequently with range information in every state.

Users of the site can find a gun range through a:

• Search by state
• Search by distance from zip code
• Search by sport or amenities

And there’s even something called “5-Star Ranges.” From the website:

In your search you may find ranges identified with up to five stars. This is a rating system developed by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) that distinguishes these ranges as the best at providing quality-level recreational experiences…

Facilities can earn up to five stars based on an evaluation of 6 criteria: appearance, customer/member focus, customer/member development, management, community relations and amenities.

Current lists of both 4- and 5-star ranges can be viewed.

Finally, in addition to all this information, WhereToShoot.org contains additional sections, “Video Tips” and “Resources for Shooters,” for the benefit of gun owners.

Start your search for a shooting range here.

I apologize about not publishing a ROTW post the last couple of weeks. From now on, I will make an extra effort to get one out each and every week.

(Editor’s note: Link added to “Resources” page)

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Christopher E. Hill, Editor
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