Selectmen made right call on Brox issue

Milford’s Board of Selectmen made the right decision when it adopted a rule prohibiting shooting at the town-owned Brox property. Two selectmen, Gary Daniels and Mike Putnam, voted against the rule – in other words, they thought it was fine for shooters to disturb the peace and quiet of a neighborhood – for reasons that escape us, and which they haven’t clearly articulated.

It came after the town attorney gave his opinion that a town or city has a right to control what goes on in its own property.

Fortunately, three selectmen – a majority – did the right thing.

The selectmen left open the option for the gun club to become a non-profit organization and lease the property from the town, an idea that we don’t like and one we can’t imagine nearby neighbors will find any more appealing than just letting them use the town-own land. Will the noise made by a non-profit somehow be mitigated? Will there be less lead left behind because of a non-profit status? Hardly.

And it would behoove the folks interested in forming this non-profit to take a close look at the problems faced by the Milford Mustangs, an organization that ran afoul of the state Attorney General’s Office because it didn’t follow all of the state laws governing nonprofits. This is no easy task and there are lots of rules that take up lots of time.

Not permitting the gun enthusiasts to shoot at Brox should have been an easy decision, not one that took months and no one that saw two selectmen falling on the wrong side of the fence. The town’s two top police officers had, in January, asked for an ordinance to prohibit shooting at Brox because of complaints they get every year. That should have red-flagged this issue: If people are complaining and the police would like an ordinance, then maybe shooting isn’t a good idea.

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