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Glenville approves police gun range lease

Glenville approves police gun range lease

Town will make $35,000 in improvements at fish and game club
Glenville approves police gun range lease
Niskayuna police officer Sgt. Joe Twitty fires at the Niskayuna Police Gun Range in 2014.
Photographer: Gazette file photo

GLENVILLE -- The Town Board on Wednesday unanimously approved a plan to keep the Glenville Police Department's firing range at the Glenville Fish & Game Club in West Glenville, ending potential controversy about where the range should be located.

Police use the club property now, but the board's approval of a 15-year lease formalizes that arrangement, while calling on the town to make about $35,000 in improvements that will be available to club members when the police aren't using it.

The lease heads off any further controversy about where to locate the range, like what occurred in 2018, when a new gun range was proposed on the town landfill property, and people living around it objected. The Town Board tabled the plan, but it was never withdrawn.

The town last week sent letters to the neighbors of the Glenville Fish & Game Club outlining the plan, but none came to Wednesday's meeting to object. The club is in a rural area in the middle of a 165-acre property.

Town Supervisor Chris Koetzle called the resolution a "win-win-win." "We win because we get much-improved use for our officers, and it's a win for the gun club because they get access to the improvements, and it's a win for the residents who will really see no change," he said.

The improvements to be made by the town include new shooting lanes with surrounding berms, a firing platform enclosed on three sides, a secure storage shed for police equipment, improvements to the entrance road and parking lot, and the installation of a bathroom trailer with running water for washing hands after shooting.

In consideration for being able to use the improvements when police aren't, the club won't be charging the town.

"I agree this is a win-win-win resolution, and I think it shows the strength of compromise," said Town Board member Michael Godlewski.

Board member John Pytlovany, a retired Scotia police chief, said he personally knows how difficult it can be to find places for police officers to practice, even though the state requires officers be certified in firearms annually.

"The town has looked at various options," Pytlovany said. "The best available option would be to formalize the arrangement we have now under a written lease."

Reach Gazette reporter Stephen Williams at 518-395-3086, [email protected] or @gazettesteve on Twitter.

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