The Ramsey borough in New Jersey proposed a new ordinance this week that would expand gun control laws and effectively squash a controversial proposal to build a rather large indoor firing range in the neighborhood, reports NorthJersey.com.
A 1961 ordinance currently forbids the firing of “any pistol, shotgun, rifle or other type of firearms anywhere in the borough.” However, both indoor and outdoor firing ranges are exempt.
The new ordinance would remove this exemption.
“Recent events have given us cause to strengthen and further clarify language in the existing ordinance to ensure that there is no misunderstanding about how seriously we take the health and safety of our residents,” Councilman Peter Kilman told NorthJersey.com.
If the ordinance is approved, then the firing range proposal will be shot down.
The project was introduced to the Planning Board last month by Peter Cuttone, a Pennsylvania gun range safety officer. The 60,620-square-foot range, which would be named “The Screaming Eagle Club”, would have 67 firing stalls, a retail space and a restaurant.
The club would also employee full-time armed security officers to watch over each of the club’s entrances.
While addressing the board’s safety concerns, Cuttone noted that all visitors, including law enforcement, would be required to undergo a background check before using the facilities. All first-time visitors would also have to demonstrate their competency with a fake, plastic gun and complete a written and physical evaluation.
Visitors would also be required to check their firearms at the door. Firearms are only allowed in the actual firing range, and would be returned to their owner when they enter the firing stall.
“No one can walk around armed,” Cuttone told the board.
Despite all this, members of the Planning Board were still worried about safety, especially Cuttone’s plan to offer firearm rentals.
An online petition to ban the range has received over 850 signatures.