July 17, 2013. U.S. Senator Kay Hagan (NC), Co-Chair of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus, is cosponsoring a bipartisan bill to help North Carolina build and maintain public shooting ranges for hunters and sportsmen to responsibly practice their sport and promote firearm safety. The Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act would allow states to use taxes already collected on sporting equipment and ammunition to establish and maintain public shooting ranges without adding to the deficit.
“There are more than 1.5 million sportsmen and women across North Carolina who could use access to safe places for target practice and training,” said Hagan. “By helping communities across the state invest in public shooting ranges, this bill will go a long way towards continuing North Carolina’s proud tradition of responsible gun ownership, while also boosting our economy. Outdoor recreation contributes more than $19 billion to the state’s economy every year, and expanding recreational shooting areas means supporting job growth in this crucial industry.”
Outdoor recreation supports 192,000 North Carolina jobs, which generate $5.6 billion in wages and salaries and produce $1.3 billion annually in state and local tax revenue.
The Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act would allow North Carolina and states across the country to use more of their designated funding generated from federal sales tax to acquire land for, expand, or construct public target ranges. The bill also encourages the federal land management agencies to cooperate with state and local authorities to maintain target ranges on federal land.
The bipartisan Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act is sponsored by Senators Mark Udall (CO) and Jim Risch (ID). Cosponsors include Hagan’s Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus Co-Chair John Thune (SD) and Vice-Chair Mark Pryor (AR), as well as Senators John Barrasso (WY), Mark Begich (AK), Michael Bennet (CO), Mike Crapo (ID), Mike Enzi (WY), Dean Heller (NV), Amy Klobuchar (MN), Lisa Murkowski (AK) and Jon Tester (MT).
A bipartisan companion bill was introduced in the House of Representatives by Congressmen Duncan Hunter (CA) and Tim Walz (MN).