Commissioner Bill Kieft was the lone “no” vote from the Grand Haven Township Planning Commission.
The next step is having the range designer go to work on the plans, if the gun club's board approves the conditions, said board Vice President Curtis Walburg. That could be accomplished at the board’s next meeting on March 3.
The club's shooting ranges have been closed since bullets flew off the property during an incident on Sept. 29, 2011. Members of the Grand Valley State University Public Safety Department were conducting a training operation on the club’s rifle range at the time.
Police and residents of the nearby Cutter Park subdivision became aware of the loose bullets when a contractor was hit in the arm by one.
A subsequent search of Cutter Park revealed several bullet holes in roofs and siding in the subdivision located just over a mile east of the gun club, which is located on 160th Avenue between Ferris and Lincoln streets.
The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department conducted an investigation, but no charges were authorized.
Since that time, gun club officials have been trying to come up with a plan that would make the range safe enough to operate again.
Officials have visited other ranges and worked with expert range designer Clark Vargas to come up with a “no blue sky” range baffle design. This means no bullets would be allowed to leave the gun club property.
And that’s one of the conditions Cutter Park resident Adam Twa asked the township's Planning Commission to add to the list Monday night.
Another condition requested by Planning Commission Chairman Ron Redick was that the club provides its operations manual to the township for approval before the range is allowed to reopen.
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