When this project first started, a group of citizens who were interested in bringing the shooting range to Mitchell approached the City of Mitchell about being a partner to help see the project become a reality. The group had already been in contact with the State of SD to secure grant funding to offset the majority of the cost of the project. At the time, the City saw the proposal as an opportunity to bring a “quality of life” recreational amenity to the Mitchell area; that could also be a draw for visitors to the proposed range, or to attend events at the new range. Because of this, the City agreed to look at ways we could help the project move forward. Our efforts included reviewing city-owned land for a potential location, completing a preliminary design, and committing to assist with the operation of the range if it was located on City property.
During the review of city-owned property, only one location met the requirements that were necessary to ensure that the design and safety standards could be implemented. That is how the “Kelly” property (adjacent to the new wetland being constructed) was chosen. While the City believes that the preliminary planning of the shooting range was done within the required design and safety standards; we are also aware that there has been significant opposition to the proposed location of the range. Due to this, the City is requesting that Davison County Board of Adjustment pull the conditional use permit application from consideration. The City will also be removing the application to the Game Fish and Parks for the proposed shooting range.
The City supports the efforts to find a suitable location that will meet the zoning code and the grant requirements for the proposed range within the Mitchell area. But, the City will not be proposing an alternate location as we do not have another City property that will fit the needs of the shooting range design. While the City is not able to offer direct support of maintenance and operation of the facility since it will likely be located outside of our jurisdiction; the City would still like to support the efforts to bring this amenity to the Mitchell area. We do feel that a shooting range with the safety features as proposed would be a great amenity for the Mitchell Area, and it could create another “destination” for visitors and events that come to Michell.