Board gives shooting range a boost Sportsmen's group given OK to ask state about proposed Morgan Run site

September 23, 1993|By Kerry O'Rourke | Kerry O'Rourke,Staff Writer

An isolated area in Morgan Run Natural Environment Area near routes 32 and 97 would be a good place for an outdoor shooting range, Carroll sportsmen and county officials agreed last night.

The county would need approval from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources before it could build a range in the state park. The proposed site is on the east side of Route 97, one mile south of Route 32.

Carroll's Recreation and Parks Board voted unanimously to let the Carroll County Sportsmen's Association talk with DNR officials about building a range there, provided that the public has input before a decision is made.

The board met last night at the Carroll County Education Center in Westminster.

The county would lease the land from the state and the sportsmen's association would operate the range, said Steve Scherer, the association president.

Last year, the state proposed a shooting range in a southern part of Morgan Run, but neighbors objected. The proposed site, off Oak Tree Road, was close to Clearview Airpark.

The site proposed last night is located on 77 acres in the northern-most portion of the park. The sportsmen would use 2 or 3 acres for the range, said association member Bradley Vosburgh.

The nearest home is 3,000 feet -- more than a half-mile -- away from the proposed site, association Treasurer Hap Baker said.

Carroll Recreation and Parks Director Richard J. Soisson said the site is a good one, but would need access from Route 97.

The state would have to approve a turn lane on Route 97 into the site, he said.

Sportsmen have been looking for a site for an outdoor shooting range for years.

They have explored sites at Hoods Mill Landfill, near the proposed Gillis Falls Reservoir and at a Union Mills farm.

Neighbors have objected at each site.

Last spring, they proposed building an indoor-outdoor shooting range that would decrease noise.

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