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REPORTING · 26th October 2013
Walter McFarlane
John Kennedy from the Fire Mountain Shooting Range came before Council on October 7th to talk to them about an expansion of the range.

“Earlier this year, you approved a grant for the shooting club in the amount of $36,900 so we can expand the range out there due to increased usage. When we approached you about that, the original proposal was to have a grant application to the Federal Government for the same amount,” said Kennedy.

He told Council they were turned down by the government for a matching grant. The cost for the project is $74,000. Using the money they did have, they were able to put up a new building. The next phase is moving earth down the range. This requires $7,500 more.

Kennedy stated they were able to get some work done from the companies. A slab was put in after construction companies in town for the projects were petitioned by their workers who use the range. As for materials, there is a company clearing material for one of the pipeline and they have wood chips they need to get rid of.

“I always like to hear about volunteer work. It makes it so much more community effort and community function,” said Mayor Joanne Monaghan.

Councillor Rob Goffinet wanted to know when the work would be complete. He was told it was weather related, either in the winter, if there is no snow, or in the spring.

Councillor Mario Feldhoff suggested moving the excess dirt to the landfill as they are always looking for cover. Kennedy replied saying there is a lot of clay and it is soft. They were advised to fling the excess material into the ditch.

Councillor Phil Germuth stated there have been noise concerns brought to him by people from Cablecar. He had a notice of motion going in but he wanted to see the presentation first. He added Jason Vines gave him a 70 page report on the RCMP conductive on shooting ranges and how to deal with it. He wanted to work with the shooting club on this.

Monaghan wanted to know if there was Bow and Arrow out there. Kennedy told her there were none at this time but people have put up targets on one of the ranges for archery.

Councillor Mary Murphy made a motion to approve the funding. Feldhoff agreed with the motion because volunteers were putting time in to rebuild animal shelters, cabins on Clague Mountain or putting in a shooting range, these were projects which he could get behind.

The motion was called and carried.

Councillor Phil Germuth brought up a motion at the Regular Meeting of Council on October 21st to have the District of Kitimat work with the Fire Mountain Shooting Range Shooting Club to address noise concerns and have staff prepare a report on options and costs.

“With the increased membership and usage of the fire range, of course, has come increased noise. I had concerns from some citizens raising this and, to be perfectly clear, not one of them is against the shooting range or its location. All they would like to see is a way of abating noise concerns,” said Germuth.

Germuth stated this has come up from a number of residents and he has talked to club president, Jason Vines. Vines presented Germuth with an RCMP report on how shooting ranges are designed and different ways of reducing the sound and the Range is already set up perfectly to reduce it. However, the belief is the noise is coming, reverberating from the sheet metal cladding on the outside of the range.

Germuth suggested Council looking into acoustic tiles which absorb noise for the range.

Councillor Mary Murphy agreed. She stated she has received calls complaining as well. She was concerned about the cost of the buffers and asked if anything can be done with a noise bylaw. CAO Ron Poole replied a noise bylaw might not be appropriate because the range has been there for a long time.

Councillor Mario Feldhoff agreed with gathering information, and Council can make a decision once they have the information. The motion was called and carried.