July 16, 2014

Crapo, Risch Introduce Idaho County Gun Range Bill

County citizens and law enforcement would benefit

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Mike Crapo and Jim Risch today introduced the Idaho County Shooting Range Land Conveyance Act in the United States Senate. This bill would convey 31 acres belonging to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to Idaho County for a gun range. 

"If enacted, this legislation will finally allow Idaho County to provide access to important firearms training for law enforcement officials and residents, as well as create recreational opportunities for families," said Crapo. 

"Idaho County needs adequate resources to provide a gun range not only for its citizens but also for its law enforcement," said Risch.  "The Idaho County Sheriff's Office currently lacks the ability to effectively train their staff in firearm duty because they do not have facilities in the area. Also, the recreational use of firearms is common among Idahoans; many use it as an opportunity to teach safe and responsible practices to younger generations. Passing this bill will fill a major void in firearm training and practice for Idaho County citizens and ensure safe and responsible gun use in the county for years to come."

Idaho County submitted an application to the BLM Cottonwood Field Office in June 2011, for a public gun range on a parcel of 31acres of BLM land. The BLM is prevented from disposing the 31-acre parcel that Idaho County has requested because it is in a portion of land that was designated by Congress for potential inclusion in the National Wild and Scenic River Act. This portion of land is currently under a withdrawal order from the Department of Interior (DOI) that protects the land while awaiting official designation.

This legislation would release the parcel from the DOI withdrawal order and give the BLM authority to convey the land to Idaho County for this use.

This bill is a companion to Raul Labrador's legislation by the same name in the U.S. House of Representatives.

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