November 20, 2012
MADISON - A state run shooting range in located in northern Wisconsin's Iron County will undergo improvements to expand opportunities and make the range safer thanks to a nearly $15,000 donation from the National Rifle Association.
Keith Warnke, Department of Natural Resources hunting and shooting sport coordinator accepted a check in the amount of $14,700.00 for the Snaketrack Public Shooting Range project. This was the third grant from the NRA for upgrading public ranges. The first two, each for $25,000.00, were for the Yellowstone Lake State Park range in Lafayette County and McMiller Range in the Southern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest.
Warnke says the funds will be matched at a three-to-one rate with federal Pittman-Robertson grant monies to improve the three very popular ranges.
DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp noted that with an estimated 800,000 shooters in the state, Wisconsin DNR has a long history of promoting safe and accessible shooting opportunities, including a commitment to provide ranges on public lands.
The dozen or so public ranges are considered generally heavily used and several are in need of repair and maintenance work.
"These grants, generously given from the National Rifle Association will really help us to fulfill our commitment to improve and increase public awareness of, and access to, quality, safe shooting opportunities at public ranges," Stepp said.
The Pittman-Robertson grant revenues are taxes that are paid by shooters and hunters on ammunition and equipment, "so it's only fitting we're putting the money right back into providing more shooting opportunities," she said.
NRA Senior Field Representative Scott Taetsch thanked Secretary Stepp and the DNR for having implemented this much needed program, stating that the NRA, with its vast experience and resources in shooting ranges, was proud to assist in building more public ranges in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin Firearm Owners, Ranges, Clubs, and Educators Inc. (Wisconsin FORCE) President Jeff Nass stated, "Working together we can properly use Pittman-Robertson funding and expand and improve shooting ranges across the state." Wisconsin FORCE is the NRA's chartered association and has been working closely with the NRA and DNR on various projects. Wisconsin FORCE helped tie the two organizations together on this project.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Keith Warnke, 608-576-5243