The Pass Christian Board of Aldermen voted unanimously to change the city’s gun range ordinance to extend hours of operation from 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. The vote gave city attorney Malcolm Jones the go-ahead to make the change to the current gun range ordi-nance effective immediately.
Aldermen were responding to a complaint about the sounds of gunshots late in the evening coming from GunHo Indoor Shooting Range and Firearms Store.
In discussion prior to the vote, Ward III Alderman An-thony Hall, whose district in which GunHo operates, told owner Roger Caplinger that the board wanted to achieve a “win-win,” an outcome that was acceptable to Caplinger and the citizens of Pass Christian. The 9:00 p.m. closing time actually gives GunHo the option of extending their business day. The latest the business currently closes is 8:00 p.m. In the past GunHo would hold special events after clos-ing hours which could go on to any time of the night. Aldermen agreed that this needed to be regulated.
“It’s a reasonable compro-mise,” said Caplinger. “Currently, it’s not going to affect my business. There were some plans that we were going to bring in for kids to do. They were not real guns or real ammo, like air soft. They’re not going to be as loud.”
Caplinger said that he want-ed to be a good citizen and a good neighbor in the North Street area where the business is located. He reminded the board that in the seven years the business has been there, only one complaint had been lodged.
“I try to play fair with all my neighbors,” said Caplinger. “At the same time, I didn’t jump up and down when you all wanted to put houses in there.”
Ward II Alderman Regina Charlot said that a neighborhood existed in that area prior to Hurricane Katrina.
“I’ve spoken to some of the citizens in the area although they are not my immediate constituents,” said Charlot. “They just don’t want to create problems.”
Mayor Chipper McDermott offered a compromise of 9:00 p.m. after aldermen suggested 8:00/10:00 p.m. as possible closing times.
In other business, the board voted unanimously to deny The Pass Christian Sailing Foundation storage space and slip usage adjacent to the Pass Christian Yacht Club.
Aldermen voted unani-mously for the Gulf Coast Running Club to use the City Gazebo and public streets for an annual running event on December 16. A $150 ad was also approved for the St. Paul Carnival Association program.
Registration fees for Aldermen to attend a three-day Winter Legislative Conference in January was also approved.