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Letters - May 21, 2010
Kitsap Rifle and Revolver Club
Club has been a good neighbor for better part of a century
You recently ran an article about the Kitsap Rifle and Revolver Club (May 7). I thought the article was significantly biased against the club by not doing proper research and fact checking before publishing. It looked like the political playbook of spreading half truths and innuendos. I would think that if this was such a pressing issue by this small group of opposed citizens that this would be an ongoing thing, not just something that has come up since the club purchased the property just a short while ago. If this were such important issues to these people, where were they 5, 10 25, 100 years ago. Did they just find out that there was a gun club next door? The club throughout its history has been a good steward of the land they occupy and have made significant improvements in environmental protection. They have also been good neighbors by restricting the hours the range could be used. If it wasn’t for irresponsible people trespassing, tearing down fences and signs and shooting into the range from outside as well as illegal dumping, maybe some of the negative impressions would be eliminated. But, since this range supports and defends the Second Amendment, there are some people that will go to any length to crush the freedoms guaranteed even if it means false accusations, rumors and half truths.
Cooperation is two-way street
While you are correct in your opinion section (Central Kitsap Reporter, May 7) concerning the gun club and neighbors should get along, it seems it as been a one way street so far. There are numerous issues in this debate, not the least of which is that the county has let the gun club expand without permits and county supervision. They were “grandfathered” in 1993 at one rifle and one pistol firing lane and now they are at 16. Many of these new lanes aim directly across the Heritage Park on Newberry Hill towards a high school and residential developments. While historically they have been shooting safely there for 80 years, with continued growth and their expansion, it now has become a potential safety hazard.
Also, there are environmental issues of pollution (lead) to wetlands and Chico Creek headwaters.
Last, there is a noise aspect. It has been difficult to side with the gun club when they shoot from 7 a.m. until 10 p.m., 365 days a year. No other outdoor gun club in the state of Washington that I have found allows this type of shooting window. I don’t believe it is too much to ask that we be allowed to enjoy a peaceful evening on our deck without the sound of continuous gunfire. Or that I not be awakened on a Sunday morning at 7 a.m. by gunfire.
You are correct that something should be worked out but that has the assumption that there are two willing partners. Currently, the gun club has been the one unwilling to change. Everything changes. We have a mall where farmland used to sit. The county has changed the zoning for urban growth in numerous areas. We only ask that the gun club get into compliance with their “grandfathered” rights and use a bit of restraint on shooting times. Lastly, as environmental issues are now in the forefront of our country, they look to cleanup their site to insure the health of our ecosystem in Kitsap County.
Chickens in Bremerton
An open letter
to the City Council
We represent a small segment of a large group of citizens in Bremerton who want to be able to keep hens legally.
This is a movement initiated by the citizens of Bremerton. This group and our citizens initiative is the culmination of years of frustration about being denied access to hens and homegrown eggs.
Hundreds of municipalities across the country have legalized hens, from New York City to Loveland, Colorado (pop. 59,563). We’ve found little evidence of enforcement issues or costs involved with enacting an ordinance similar to ours.
We ask that the Council be the entity that creates solid policy around this issue, and also retains the ability to change it in the future. As we understand it, this will not be possible if a citizens initiative is voted into law. However, at this time, it remains our only option.
We also recognize that the city is facing many urgent and pressing issues. However, the ability to responsibly own hens for eggs and as pets is near and dear to the hearts of a large number of people living in your districts. We believe that your prioritizing this issue will demonstrate that you are aware of the issues important to them, and are interested in making their day-to-day lives better. This law will have immediate and lasting impact.
We hope that you will see our group not as your adversary on this issue, but as your ally, and as a personal connection to the people who elected you to serve.
Patty Zwick, Deborah McDaniel, Laura Moynihan, Mary Klein, Eugene Brennan, Mark Smith, Robert Dollar, Jordy Andrew, Jean Schanen and Carolee Valentine
A thank you from the CK Food Bank
Caring and generosity appreciated by those who need it most
Kitsap County completed the annual Letter Carriers/ Rural Carriers food drive on May 18.
I am taking the liberty to say thanks for all the food banks in the county. We look forward every year to this day. This is the day all the letter carriers and rural carriers do a tremendous amount of extra work to assist the food banks with replenishing the stores for summer. Each food bank receives food from the post office in their area. This year the generosity of our friends and neighbors was nothing less than overwhelming. The small bags of food you each left by your mail boxes brought a total of 133,000 pounds of high quality, nutritious and non perishable food to the eight food banks in Kitsap County.
While I am the director of Central Kitsap Food Bank, I speak for all the area food banks to thank everyone for their caring and generosity. The generosity of this county has never ceased to amaze me as I continue working in the food bank business.
The volunteers that work with each food bank are exceptional. I usually do not mention specific groups however, this year I am told the Washington Youth Academy provided a strong group of youngsters that were there until the very end.
Again, a special thanks to all the carriers, donors and volunteers for their extra effort. Everyone deserves a huge pat on the back.
As we look forward to next year we all continue to thank you again and again.
Central Kitsap Food Bank