The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has told the City of Chicago that a) they must allow shooting ranges, b)that they can’t so limit their locations as to be prohibitive, and c)that those under the age of 18 should be allowed at ranges so as to get proper firearm training. These rulings stem from cases brought the Second Amendment Foundation and the Illinois State Rifle Association in Ezell v. City of Chicago and what is called Ezell II.
On Wednesday, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel proposed new zoning regulations that would bring the city into compliance with the court’s rulings.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday proposed allowing gun ranges in more areas of Chicago in response to a federal appellate court ruling that struck down the city’s zoning restrictions on the shooting facilities.
The new rules would allow gun ranges in business, commercial and industrial areas, provided the owners obtained a special-use permit — which requires officials to take into consideration any objections from people and businesses in the surrounding area…
The changes also would allow people younger than 18 to shoot at a range, provided they are supervised by a parent, guardian or trained instructor.
The earlier regulations had limited shooting ranges to industrial areas and required that the ranges be located more the 500 feet away from “homes, schools, day care operations, houses of worship, liquor stores, parks, libraries, museums and hospitals.” This effectively limited shooting ranges to about a 2% area within the city limits. The early regulations also banned anyone under the age of 18 from going to a range.
While I don’t have the final details of Emanuel’s proposal, this seems to be a start in the right direction. When the minutes from the March 29th City Council meeting are published, I will publish the relevant portions.
Congratulations again to the Second Amendment Foundation, the Illinois State Rifle Association, plaintiff Rhonda Ezell, and attorney Alan Gura for their efforts to bring a basic civil right to the City of Chicago.