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Committee Approves Mayor's Gun Range Proposal

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Committee Approves Mayor's Gun Range Proposal

A Chicago City Council committee on Tuesday approved Mayor Rahm Emanuel's proposal to allow gun ranges to operate in Chicago under rigid conditions.

Emanuel rushed the ordinance directly to City Council's Public Safety Committee, a shortcut normally used for emergencies.

It now goes to the full council for approval.

Two standing federal lawsuits could soon receive rulings in the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, so the city wanted to have an ordinance in place so that appellate judges might be less inclined to intervene with a less restrictive ordinance.

Gun owners in the city are currently forced to head to gun ranges in the suburbs to receive gun safety training.

The ranges will only be allowed to operate in areas zoned for manufacturing, only after obtaining a special use permit that requires a public hearing. Ranges will also be prohibited within 1,000 feet of a school, park, place of worship, day care center, liquor store, library, museum, hospital or residential district.

Gun ranges in the city must also be enclosed, and the new ordinance mandates the type of construction in more detail. Ranges will be allowed the operating hours between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m., and they will be free to sell ammunition only for use at the facility.

Each gun range will require a license costing $4,000 every two years.

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