On May 29, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources signed a land use order that prohibits discharging a firearm, except for lawful hunting, at state games areas in Olive and Blendon townships.
“I think that's a positive move and an appropriate one for the department to take,” said state Rep. Amanda Price, R-Park Township. “It has become a safety problem for the residents of the area.”
Price, who represents most of western Ottawa County in the state House, said she thought the new rule keeps the game areas in line with their originally intended purpose of managing ring-necked pheasant, while at the same time ensuring the safety of the surrounding community.
The issue of safety came to a head earlier this year when a stray bullet fired from the Olive State Game Area area pierced the home of Ruth and Bernard Luurtsma in the 11000 block of Port Sheldon Road. Police said a bullet fired from a Russian-made rifle passed about 2 feet above Ruth's head as she rested on her living room couch.
Luurtsma said the move to regulate that type of firearm activity at the game area is a welcome relief.
“We’re definitely pleased the state will follow through,” she said.
However, Luurtsma said she's still concerned with enforcement of the rules.
Price said the measure was under a lot of review prior to being issued.
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