A proposed gun range in the eastern part of the state is creating lots of backlash from residents who live in the area.
State Police are proposing a new range in Griswold, but people who live there are not happy about it.
Residents went to Hartford on Tuesday wearing buttons and carrying signs. They don’t want a gun range in their town or next to the Pachaug State Forest.
“It will impact my neighbors and my family and it will also impact visitors to Pachaug State Forest who come there to camp and hike and fish,” said Allie Joslyn.
The Commissioner for the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protect is leading the fight for State Police for a new gun range to replace the one in Simsbury.
The range in Simsbury keeps getting flooded, which creates issues.
“That is available at Simsbury, but again because of the flooding it is increasingly difficult and limiting for that purpose,” said Doro Schirro, Commissioner of Emergency Services and Public Protection.
State Senator Heather Somers has many questions about the new range.
“There’s still this veil of secrecy going around. We’ve asked if this land in Griswold been sold, has it, yes or no, has the state purchased it. The response I got as a state senator was we don’t have to tell you if we purchase something we only have to tell you if we sell something,” said Somers.
Somers would like to see the State Police use a facility in East Haven and make adjustments if needed, rather than build a new range, which could cost $20 million or more.
Other lawmakers feel this may be an issue of “not in my backyard.”
“We need a facility, a gun range where our troopers, our new people, the people who are training, today’s a different world and we need a facility,” said Colchester State Representative Linda Orange.
The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has not done an impact study on the gun range and its effect on the state forest. That’s something that lawmakers will want to see done before they make any decisions.
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