A nearly 50 year-old Vermont gun club is being harassed by newer neighbors who want to shut it down. Club leaders stood their ground in a tense standoff with police who tried to stop operations in May. Now the club is suing the town in order to protect itself from further threats. Watchdog.org has the full story.
Here’s a sample of the harassment the club is facing:
“Most people accept the fact that they’re shooting on Wednesdays and Sundays. It’s been there probably longer than most people have lived here, so they accept it,” McGuire said. “(But) there are a limited number that live right nearby that would like to see the shooting cease altogether, and they’re using whatever pressures and techniques they can to try to make that happen.”
The various “pressures and techniques” are well-documented in an April 2014 memo from McGuire to the Williston Selectboard.
In one instance, neighbors claimed lead detected in nearby waters came from ammunition fired at the range. When club owners followed a state order to haul fresh dirt to create berms and prevent runoff, the neighbors complained the club didn’t have an approved hauling permit.
When owners got approval from the Williston Development Review Board, the neighbors argued the new dirt wasn’t acceptable because it contained “construction debris.” When the club agreed to order the right type of dirt, neighbors complained the process of hauling in dirt caused dust to fill the air. One proposed solution was to pave the road before the club could haul dirt to the site to address the water runoff complaint.
In all, neighbors requested six ongoing regulatory actions against the club related to soil testing, land haul permits and hours of operation.