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Goochland commission shoots down plans for shooting clays range

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Goochland, Va. (WTVR) - Thursday night, after a public hearing that lasted four and a half hours, the Goochland Planning Commission voted against a commercial sport clays range permit.

But not before the applicant took their best shot in stating their case that the range would be a good thing for the county.

Andrew Dykers owns Orapax, a hunting preserve. He has tried to expand it into a sporting clays range twice before; once in 1991, and then in 2007. Both  times the plans were rejected.

“It is our hope that this commission approves the conditional use permit,” said Neal Cauder, Andrew Dyker’s son-in-law at the start of the meeting.

Since the last public hearing, the Dykers completed a sound test they say proved it would not disrupt neighbors.

While the taxes it would generate only equal $75 a year, the Dykers insisted the range would help local restaurants.

But the opposition came  out with guns blazing.

Resident Linda Trice reminded the Planning Commission that allowing Orapax to build a sporting clays range so close to people’s homes, would be in violation of the county’s ordinance, specifically, disrupting the comfort of residents and possibly hurting their property values.

More than 30 people spoke in opposition versus 10 in support of the range.

The range, had it been approved, would operate six days a week from 9 to 5 p.m., with up to 24 shooters a day.

Tonight’s recommendation by the Goochland Planning Commission goes to the Goochland Board of Supervisors for a vote.