Members appointed to Jefferson shooting range committee

David Sullivan

David Sullivan

PORT TOWNSEND — Jefferson County commissioners took another step forward Monday in the ongoing discussion of shooting facilities in the county by appointing members to the Review Committee on Commercial Shooting Facilities.

Three members from the public representing Jefferson County districts, one at-large representative, one representative of a current shooting facility in Jefferson County and one representative of tribal interests were appointed Monday by the commissioners.

In a unanimous vote, appointments were given to District 1 resident J. Thomas Richardson, who lives within 4 miles of the Jefferson County Sportsmen’s Association (JCSA) facility in Port Townsend; District 2 resident Janet Welch, who lives 10 miles from the JCSA in Nordland; District 3 resident Riley Parker from Quilcene; and at-large member Joseph D’Amico from Tarboo Lake.

Also appointed was John Minor, who represents the JCSA as the existing commercial shooting facility representative. Fifteen residents showed interest in serving in the volunteer positions.

Commissioners David Sullivan and Kathleen Kler voted to select Tim Cullinan, wildlife program manager for the Point No Point Treaty Council, to represent tribal interests. Commissioner Kate Dean abstained from the vote.

“I believe we made an error in selecting only one tribal representative position when we wrote the moratorium ordinance. We did not anticipate receiving multiple applications representing different tribes,” Dean said Monday.

“In my experience in working with tribes, it’s important to give each sovereign nation a spot at the table. One does not represent all.

“I have absolute faith in Mr. Cullinan’s ability to serve well. I was not opposing his nomination by any means. I wanted to weigh on mixing tribal representation.”

At-large member D’Amico’s appointment reflects his interest as a stakeholder. He ran Fort Discovery, a shooting range training facility located in Gardiner, for 31 years. He has proposed developing a shooting and archery range on 40 acres near Tarboo Lake that, if approved, would become Cedar Hill Recreational Facility. He plans to train local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, private citizens and diplomats.

In addition, a representative of the county Department of Community Development, a representative from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and a representative of the county director of environmental health will also be appointed.

A representative of the Jefferson County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office and C. Vargas and Associates, the firm hired to provide technical support to the county and the review committee, will be ex-officio members.

The review committee’s mission is to study the safety, environmental and land-use impacts of commercial shooting facilities, address the option of allowing indoor commercial shooting facilities in the no-shooting areas ordinance, and to provide input to the county as the county creates and recommends a draft ordinance.

Within 120 days of the committee’s establishment, the ordinance will be forwarded to the Planning Commission or to the Board of County Commissioners for review.

Sullivan noted that the review committee’s members have a wide range of knowledge and perspective, without giving any one perspective dominance.

Commissioners voted in February to continue its Moratorium Ordinance on Commercial Shooting Facilities and decided to have an environmental impact study done.

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Jefferson County Editor/Reporter Jeannie McMacken can be reached at 360-385-2335 or at jmcmacken@peninsuladailynews.com.

Kathleen Kler

Kathleen Kler

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