Thanks to over 5,200 Coloradans who signed a petition and others who shared personal stories backing Mark Udall's bill to develop public shooting ranges. The Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act (S.1249) is scheduled to be heard at the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works' (EPW) Subcommittee on Water and Wildlife on TUESDAY, April 24, 2012. The measure would give states the flexibility to spend their already-allotted Pittman-Robertson funds to create or improve public shooting ranges.
In February, Udall called on Coloradans to voice their support for the bill; he delivered the signatures and wrote to committee leaders asking for a hearing to facilitate its passage through committee and to the Senate floor. Last week, along with leaders in the shooting community, Udall held a press conference at a Colorado Springs range again urging Coloradans to sign his petition calling on the EPW subcommittee to hear his bill.
"I am pleased that the Committee on Environment and Public Works heard Coloradans' call to hold a hearing on my bill to develop public shooting ranges," Udall said. "Progress in Washington is not always easy, but this goes to show that Coloradans actively engaging in the process can make a difference. This hearing is a step in the right direction for a common-sense bill that expands opportunities for sportsmen and sportswomen to practice their sport without costing taxpayers a dime."
Udall will attend the hearing to make remarks in support of his bill. The first panel of witnesses will feature Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Dan Ashe and Dr. James Anderson, the director of National Institutes of Health's Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives. The second panel will comprise Dr. Doug Inkley, a senior wildlife biologist at the National Wildlife Federation; Dr. Greg Schildwachter with Watershed Results LLC; and Dr. Martin Wasserman of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.