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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
From: Single Source Procurement - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation ...

(DEC Website)
NY DEC Contract # C007823 Contract Award Date: 05/07/2012
Awarded to: Cornell Cooperative Extension of Saratoga County

Purpose: "Develop, implement , and administer programs (Shooting Range Grants Program and NASP-NY) to enhance
hunter safety, education, and satisfaction."
Description: "As the sole provider of the New York State 4-H Shooting Sports Program, CCE-SC is uniquely qualified to work with the Department to implement these important programs. Through the Shooting Sports Program, CCE-SC promotes the safe and responsible use of firearms and archery equipment in order to provide participants with 'valuable vocational and life-long recreational education.' CCE-SC has a network of shooting specialists state-wide that makes CCE-SC uniquely positioned to implement the Shooting Range Grants Program and NASP-NY [archery in schools program]."

From: Open Book New York - Office of the State Comptroller

(State Comptroller Website)
Transaction Type: Original Contract
Transaction Amount: $749,557.00
Contract Start Date: 10/1/2011
Contract End Date: 9/30/2016
Description: Shooting Range Grants Program Administration
Transaction Approved/Filed Date: 5/7/2012

If you can get a straight answer from DEC or OSC as to why the contract award/approved date is seven months after the start of the contract period, in different fiscal year (FY runs Apr.1-Mar.31), let us know. So far that info has not been forthcoming in inquiries about it.

DEC Division of Fish, Wildlife & Marine Resources (FWMR) runs this program/contract. FWMR Director Patricia Riexinger says that they are just now getting things ready to announce a request for proposals (i.e., requests for shooting range development project funding) in January 2013.

This state program essentially redistributes federal funds obtained under the federal Pittman-Robertson Act (Wildlife Restoration Act). P-R funds are used for many wildlife projects, and shooting range development, improvement, cleanup, etc. are permissible projects for P-R funding. The feds reimburse 75% of a project's cost. The remaining 25% can be funded by the state or private sources. For example, the NRA has a shooting range funding program that sometimes covers part or all of the 25%.

A key provision is that the range operator given funds must offer public access hours free or at minimal cost. The idea is to encourage shooting practice and spending. The P-R funds come from a federal 11% tax on guns, ammo, archery equipment, etc. Federal and other research show very clearly that the firearms industry has benefited massively (to the tune
of 1000% improvement in profit) from the P-R law. So it makes everybody happy. Wildlife, shooters, vendors. Ask the NSSF.

Many states (26 checked so far) have had this kind of program in effect long before NY.

The funds can be used by any non-profit shooting range owner (club, etc.) or government agency (DEC, city, county, etc.). In some states, they use P-R funds to build/improve state-owned ranges on state land ... some of them big projects in the millions, some small ones scattered around the state. In other states, instead of state-owned facilities, they distribute the funds to private not-for-profit range operators (e.g.: clubs) who agree to provide public access hours meeting state rules. VT and MA are examples of this.

Every state bordering on NY has these state range development grant programs, and 21 other states that I checked. It appears safe to say that MOST states have it. NY is late to the table. Not that we have not received or used the P-R funds. There is no requirement they be used for ranges. They can be used for a variety of wildlife restoration projects and programs.

Watch for an announcement from DEC in January that they are looking for range operators (private or publicly owned) to ask them for money!

You can bet your bippy (this is speculation, but well-informed) that the DEC will NOT use these funds to clean up the shooting dumps scattered around on state lands. Those (imho) will continue, and get worse. With this move to fund public access at ranges, eventually only those who will not tolerate range safety rules and want "reactive targets" (like tv's) will use the unmanaged shooting ranges on state land. Others will use the free or low-cost ranges "subsidized" by the state, where the facilities are better (like toilets ... yes, the P-R funds can be used for that kind of range improvement), and things are usually safer. But this will be a very long-term evolution.

Personally, I would like to see them build state-owned and maintained ranges (whether staffed or not), and then outlaw all target practice on state land except at the formal ranges, because of the abuses at unmanaged ranges. This could be done one county at a time. When public ranges have been established in a county, then that county becomes no-shooting on state land. Funds would not provide for it to be implemented statewide all at once. But they could do a handful of counties per year.

DEC says they expect to award grants in Spring 2013 for projects to break ground in the summer. The funds have to be used within the same fiscal year, so it's a scramble. A senator from Colorado is pushing a change to the federal law to increase the fed share from 75 to 90% and to allow multi-year project funding.

I'd cite all the sources of my info, but it's really tedious, so for now this is a summary of research ... aside from the bippy-worth's speculation about how the DEC will NOT use these funds to clean up their own act when it comes to public shooting development and maintenance ... which they definitely can do with these fed P-R funds, AND with help from NRA and other private sources. Yes, NRA definitely awards shooting range development grants to government. They are proud of this work, helping to make up the 25%. Some projects involve not just money but services and materials in-kind donated by local
people helping to make these projects happen. Facts, folks. I did the homework.

So ... some questions for discussion:

1. Have you heard of this before? Know of anyone acting on it / waiting for the DEC to open the program to grant requests? Are you one of them?

2. Your preference? Choose between funding private clubs' range development/improvement projects in exchange for their granting public access hours (which can be rather limited, like one day per week and weekends), or DEC providing state-owned and state/volunteer-maintained ranges. Which do you like, and why? It does not have to be either-or. It can be both. But there are only so many dollars to go around. (In states that build public ranges with P-R funds, sometimes they are staffed, sometimes only supervised by ranger patrols, sometimes have volunteer range safety officers, sometimes no staffing or regular patrols, but there are rules posted and presumably enforced, and in many instances they have operating hours, whether staffed or not, and are closed one day a week or other periods for maintenance, cleanup, etc., which may be
done by volunteers or state staff ... in other words, the options are wide open. The feds do not make many rules about what kind of range you can have or how you operate it. Most of that is regulated by the state.)

3. Do you think DEC should use these federal funds to clean up and manage the existing trashy ranges on state land? For example, after cleanup of an existing range, build shooting benches, proper target backstop berms, post hours, patrol for compliance by forest rangers, arrange for periodic cleanups (ideally by volunteers, to stretch the dollars for more ranges) ... these are all examples of things they do in other states.

THIS CAN BE SUPPLEMENTED BY PRIVATE FUNDS FROM NRA AND ANYBODY ELSE WHO IS INTERESTED ... clubs, vendors, etc. In a case in W.VA. somebody contributed road-building supplies and equipment to a state-run range project on public land. With some creative cooperation, the possibilities are almost unlimited.

Love to hear your thoughts on this, other info about it, etc.
 

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Personally, I would like to see them build state-owned and maintained ranges (whether staffed or not), and then outlaw all target practice on state land except at the formal ranges, because of the abuses at unmanaged ranges. This could be done one county at a time. When public ranges have been established in a county, then that county becomes no-shooting on state land. Funds would not provide for it to be implemented statewide all at once. But they could do a handful of counties per year.[/QUOTE]

Are you fraking serious? This is why I hate NY and a lot of the people in it. Building ranges is fine, but taking away our right to use public land just because there will be a few square ranges to use doesn't fly. Who are you and what's your horse in this?
 

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No shooting on state owned public land? No, I don't see me supporting that. I did notice that the OP's only listed interest in their profile is conservation and with a handle like AdkEvergreen, I would be leery of them being of the treehugger genre. Just my opinion though.
 

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AdkEvergreen seems to be into hiking and "space, solitude, quiet ... silence". But yet he wants "Freedom. Take that away and I'm dead. There is no me not free". Freedom for yourself perhaps but not others?

I'm usually not this grumpy! :p
 

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I would like to see more ranges in NYS open to the public to shoot on. If that reduces the shooting on state land then great. BUT like others I do not support taking away the option of shooting on state land.

I dont think we should jump all over this guy yet though. He did spend some time researching first so I would like to hear more about his view point at least.

Yea I do very much dislike a certain type of ADK person who thinks they are entitled to enjoy the woods their way and other people shouldnt ruin it by shooting or smoking and all that stuff.
 

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Nope, we don't need more government programs to cause trouble where none exists.
 

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My brother is out in Colorado. While I was visiting I spotted a sign "public shooting range" . Of course I was like "hey Dave lets go shoot there" .
His reaction " no way those places are dangerous, unmanned and full of idiots and lowlifes" .
Do we need these here?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Mr. Ouchie, "Are you fraking serious?" I assume this is rhetorical, as my sincerity is obvious.

"Who are you and what's your horse in this?"

I have this thing about answering questions. I like it when folks are willing to answer the ones they ask. Your horse is portrayed well enough. So I'll answer that part of your question. In regard to the matter you highlighted, my interest is in rational, respectful treatment of our public property. I also want to retain the multiple-use principal (which not just a principal or opinion, it is the law), meaning that citizens can use the land for a variety of things. I don't see anybody using land trashed by irresponsible shooters for anything but shooting, which is a single use, not multiple-use. You want your kids to play there? I know of one of these places that is within an easy walk of a whole village of houses with children.

I really appreciate the way that responsible shooters are among the first to stand up for responsible target shooting on public land, and first to oppose the trashing. They understand that it's in their best interest to see these places cleaned up and maintained. The new Shooting Range Development Grant program could be used for this purpose, in coordination with other efforts to make free public shooting ranges sufficiently available without their being dangerous and disgusting dumps.

My notion of banning target practice on public land where proper public ranges are made available is based in my belief that even if we provide ample public ranges, the abusers will still keep trashing the land unless we ban it, and require enforcement of it. I can anticipate reasonable questions this will arouse, and I am willing to discuss them. I questioned my ideas a lot before publishing them here. I understand others doing it, too?

Who are you and what's your horse in this?

As to your question about who I am ... we are known as much as we need to be known here, by our behaviors.

Les, re: on "a handle like AdkEvergreen" and "treehugger genre" ... environmentalist and 2nd Amendment rights supporter are not mutually exclusive. Some of the most avid shooting sportsmen around are profound lovers of nature, but if you met them you would not use tree-hugger as an epithet against them. It's easy to do it to someone you don't know. In any case, none of us has any right whatsoever to be abusive and destructive to nature. In fact, it's illegal; just not much enforced, not at all in some cases.

Ouchie, re: "Freedom for yourself perhaps but not others?" Freedom is not free. We owe it our respect and responsibility. Abuse of our shared property does qualify as freedom, but more like enslavement to selfishness.

I have stated a personal preference for how I would like to see two important issues addressed: (1) the need for public shooting ranges -- preferably free of charge, and (2) our mutual obligation to protect -- conserve, not preserve -- natural resources. I offered my idea on a way to do it. What's yours? I'm sure you can make some constructive input when you're finished reacting to my view.

Nortatoga, opinions are ... abundant. Yours is noted.

USMCVet, thanks for your kind words. On this thought: "Yea I do very much dislike a certain type of ADK person who thinks they are entitled to enjoy the woods their way and other people shouldnt ruin it by shooting or smoking and all that stuff." ... We are all entitled (i.e., we all pay for the right to) enjoy multiple uses of the land we all own, not for one tiny segment of the population to be allowed to "enjoy the woods their way" IN SUCH A WAY as to be destructive to it. (Yes, sport shooters are a tiny segment ... walk down a busy street and take a poll of how many people do practice shooting on state land, or any shooting, for that matter.) So, while you are concerned that unreasonable radical environmentalists may want to dictate how land may be used, some reasonable ones are concerned about the way some of our land IS being used abusively by a minority of people who can be dealt with, if we step up to the plate.

I have every reason to believe that it is a minority of shooters who are abusive to the land. Sadly, it takes only a few to do a lot of damage. (How many drunk drivers does it take to kill a busload of kids?) The rest of us can do something about that. We owe it to ourselves, for the overall reputation of shooting sports, TO PROTECT OUR RIGHTS to continue enjoyment of those sports, and because we have an obligation to conservation of nature, merely by virtue of being citizens.

Bill, "Nope, we don't need more government programs to cause trouble where none exists." Do you mean that we should not take advantage of massive amounts of federal funds created by an 11% tax (paid at the wholesle level -- but built into the retail prices) on guns, ammo, etc. to develop safe, environmentally responsible, respectable PUBLIC shooting ranges? That's the government program I reported on.

My personal preference for one way to use that program is not the only way. I mentioned other ways it is used. And I mentioned that I doubt NY will use those funds to clean up and stop the abuse at shooting dumps on state land. My expressed preference for how to use the funds is probably not much better than a dream. But some dreams can be forged into realities, if not entirely as envisioned, then perhaps in modified ways through cooperation and compromise with others having other ideas. Put your ideas on the table. That's what I asked.

I have seen people in this forum express concern that environmentalists (they even say it about the government, not understanding that government is a huge friend to shooting sports ... just follow the money) are out to take away their guns, etc. I don't want anybody taking away my gun rights either. But I don't want to allow abuse of the rights of all of us to safe, clean, natural environments that we all own.

Msrfrog, "... I spotted a sign 'public shooting range.' ... His reaction 'no way those places are dangerous, unmanned and full of idiots and lowlifes.' Do we need these here?"

We HAVE them here. The evidence of it lays in plain sight in too many places.

I feel that freedom does not mean we are "free" to turn our backs and let them be that way. We, of all people, need to do something about regulating the behaviors of "idiots and low-lifes."

I bet most here would agree that nobody with a house worth a million dollars is going to allow a shooting dump on his block (many homes are very close to shooting dumps on state land). No high ranking government official or elected "representative" will ever have to worry about the woods being trashed in THEIR back yard, or have to listen to the noise of irresponsible promiscuous shooting. But we should sit still for it happening in places where the power-elite privileged DON'T live (and with so many of them being flaming hypocrites in their claims to love nature and be "green" ... the evergreen in my moniker here is based on a real lifestyle, living in the woods, born to it, unwilling to live any other way)? We, the increasingly permanent underclass driving down from the middle class, are supposed to pay for the special protection of land near the homes of special people, while ignoring the trash on our land elsewhere?

To me, because I spend a lot of time in it, and always have all my life, I have a strong sense that all state land is MY land (and YOURS). It's all "my back yard." I think it deserves the same protection we pay DEC to give it that they give the land adjacent to the homes and properties of the privileged.

But this is all just my opinions. I know they are not perfect. Clearly, neither are those of anyone else here.
 

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[
QUOTE=AdkEvergreen;296020]
Bill, "Nope, we don't need more government programs to cause trouble where none exists." Do you mean that we should not take advantage of massive amounts of federal funds created by an 11% tax (paid at the wholesle level -- but built into the retail prices) on guns, ammo, etc. to develop safe, environmentally responsible, respectable PUBLIC shooting ranges? That's the government program I reported on.
That money has been paid willingly by hunters like myself to purchase that land. We have more than enough land now yet, NYS is a greedy bitch and buys buys buys and also gets a bye on the property taxes so folks with state land in their towns get the bill. That being said how about take that money and pay these towns their fair share? Do you feel hiring more park rangers with my money is better? What's next, no lead in the park? There's an ago old tradition in this country, it's called plinking, it's not a range type event. What about hunters? Who's to say if those shots just fired and reported by some citidiot were target practice or bad luck....hmm.... I bet some judge would have to decide:wacko:

Good luck (poker style) in your political aspirations and your quest for entitlements....hmm. boy does that sound familiar.
 

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So instead of finding the people that abuse public land and fining them, you would rather see the government abuse it's citizens by not allowing public lands for lawful recreation.

do you want to see freedom of speech removed because someone screams fire in a theater as well?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
[

Bill,

That money has been paid willingly by hunters like myself to purchase that land. We have more than enough land now yet, NYS is a greedy bitch and buys buys buys and also gets a bye on the property taxes so folks with state land in their towns get the bill. That being said how about take that money and pay these towns their fair share? Do you feel hiring more park rangers with my money is better? What's next, no lead in the park? There's an ago old tradition in this country, it's called plinking, it's not a range type event. What about hunters? Who's to say if those shots just fired and reported by some citidiot were target practice or bad luck....hmm.... I bet some judge would have to decide:wacko:

Good luck (poker style) in your political aspirations and your quest for entitlements....hmm. boy does that sound familiar.
Hunters absolutely are not the only contributors to the purchase of state land. And not all state land was ever purchased. Massive tracts of it what we now know as "state land" belonged to the state since the state was created. Codification of it as a state forest preserve came later, but the state owned it originally. Obviously a lot of land went into private ownership over the centuries, and the state does buy a lot of it. Find out what percentage of the cost of that land was paid for by taxes on hunters (or even all gun owners) and get back to us. It would be good to know.

The property tax questions are for another thread.

I don't know the sources of funding for park rangers. I guess it comes from the NY Conservation Fund, but I don't know. I guess it is a combination of taxes, fees and fines paid by all NY citizens, and by federal support, maybe some of it coming from the $10million/year in Pittman-Robertson wildlife restoration funds given to the NY Conservation Fund (among other federal contributions). I have no idea whether we need more rangers, and I'd vote for all citizens to pay for them, not just hunters.

When a hunter fires a couple of shots at quarry, even three or four of them, the chances of one of those shots hurting an unintended target involves a certain degree of risk. Increase the number of shots fired by the hundreds and thousands, and you have that much more chance of errant shots. Don't tell me they are all fired at a backstop berm. I wasn't born yesterday, and I have clear evidence that many shots at these "ranges" on state land are fired in every direction, including uprange, left, right and more than six feet up into the trees. Ask the Colorado guy. Calculate the trajectory of a shot fired high up into a tree, and how far it can travel if the tree gets missed. Sure, a hunter's shot could find a tragic target. Now increase the number of shots by a thousand. Or, should all citizens have to stay a quarter mile away from YOUR chosen place for shooting made too dangerous for anyone else to use? Okay, fine. Put up active shooting range warning signs.

I know a state land shooting range where a DEC-designated foot trail crosses the downrange area. Do all users of that trail have to hit the dirt when drunks and fools start firing? Want your kid on that trail?

My views on the use of the Pittman-Robertson funds have nothing to do with "entitlements." It is about putting money collected from shooters to use developing public shooting ranges. (Beats me why so many other states have been doing it long before NY ... with the same source of funds. Doesn't NY care about providing safe, environmentally responsible shooting ranges? Maybe now they are starting to take it seriously, with the grant program starting in January.)

No lead? I dunno. Do you read the NY DEC Conservationist magazine? In the October issue DEC Chief Wildlife Biologist --- damn I forgot his name -- and avid deer hunter wrote in an article about non-toxic ammo that he has made the switch and recommends it to all of us. In his own testing, the non-toxic ammo yielded no performance detriment for hunting.

Ask him. I'm sure he knows a lot more about it than you and me combined. (Yeah, it's expensive. But so were VHS players until a few million people bought them, and ammo sells BIG in this country.)

Thanks for the good wishes. Good luck to you, too. You need it more than I do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
So instead of finding the people that abuse public land and fining them, you would rather see the government abuse it's citizens by not allowing public lands for lawful recreation.

do you want to see freedom of speech removed because someone screams fire in a theater as well?
You make a great point. Law enforcement would be great. But I don't know how to put enough officers on the beat to catch all the abusers. The dope who yells fire in a theater is not only rare but easy to catch. Lots of witnesses, too.

So what I propose is giving responsible people decent public shooting ranges and ban the right of anybody who wants claiming a piece of our land to shoot up and trash. If it is banned, it's easier to catch them, given the noise they make. If it's not banned and the DEC officers continue just walking by and ignoring the disgusting abuse (I watched one do it recently ... walked right by ... didn't even wave hi), enforcement is the joke they have made it.
 

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You make a great point. Law enforcement would be great. But I don't know how to put enough officers on the beat to catch all the abusers. The dope who yells fire in a theater is not only rare but easy to catch. Lots of witnesses, too.

So what I propose is giving responsible people decent public shooting ranges and ban the right of anybody who wants claiming a piece of our land to shoot up and trash. If it is banned, it's easier to catch them, given the noise they make. If it's not banned and the DEC officers continue just walking by and ignoring the disgusting abuse (I watched one do it recently ... walked right by ... didn't even wave hi), enforcement is the joke they have made it.
I know there is no way to finance that forever and eventually it will lead to closures and then the citizen would be screwed. Just as laws don't stop criminals only honest citizens, your proposed ban and ranges will not hinder those that trash the land only prohibit responsible people from enjoying it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I know there is no way to finance that forever and eventually it will lead to closures and then the citizen would be screwed. Just as laws don't stop criminals only honest citizens, your proposed ban and ranges will not hinder those that trash the land only prohibit responsible people from enjoying it.
A friend recently said to me that from their house they had been hearing an unusual amount of shooting at the unofficial shooting range on state land a mile up the road (or coming from that area ... but the general location was easy to identify, and there was only one road going up there). You don't have to put an officer on every corner to catch people shooting, just a phone call from a citizen. Actually catching them is still uncertain ... they can easily be gone before the troops arrive. But that happens with illegal fires (trash etc.) and lots of other illegal things, too. It doesn't mean they should be made legal. Not all have to be caught and convicted. Just enough to be a deterrent.
 

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Msrfrog, "... I spotted a sign 'public shooting range.' ... His reaction 'no way those places are dangerous, unmanned and full of idiots and lowlifes.' Do we need these here?"

We HAVE them here. The evidence of it lays in plain sight in too many places.
My point is it would attract more people if you have a sign "public shooting range" it would just attract too many people that would trash it and make it dangerous. Just my opinion though. As it is not many people realize you can shoot on state land, better kept that way.
 

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A friend recently said to me that from their house they had been hearing an unusual amount of shooting at the unofficial shooting range on state land a mile up the road (or coming from that area ... but the general location was easy to identify, and there was only one road going up there). You don't have to put an officer on every corner to catch people shooting, just a phone call from a citizen. Actually catching them is still uncertain ... they can easily be gone before the troops arrive. But that happens with illegal fires (trash etc.) and lots of other illegal things, too. It doesn't mean they should be made legal. Not all have to be caught and convicted. Just enough to be a deterrent.
It's a shooting range. Whether official or not, will have some degree of shooting. Maybe there was just a large group of people there that day, especially with hunting season ramping up (or already started in some areas). Since there's no law against it, I don't see the issue.
 

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A friend recently said to me that from their house they had been hearing an unusual amount of shooting at the unofficial shooting range on state land a mile up the road (or coming from that area ... but the general location was easy to identify, and there was only one road going up there). You don't have to put an officer on every corner to catch people shooting, just a phone call from a citizen. Actually catching them is still uncertain ... they can easily be gone before the troops arrive. But that happens with illegal fires (trash etc.) and lots of other illegal things, too. It doesn't mean they should be made legal. Not all have to be caught and convicted. Just enough to be a deterrent.
It also doesn't mean they should be made illegal. Ranges are targets of political hacks and noise complaints. what makes you think that these state ranges would not have the same problems? Only this time it would be the Antigun government that owns them. One complaint and some zealot shuts them down. You put too much faith in the state government. If i cannot trust them to spend the taxpayers money responsibly, I sure as hell will not trust them with providing me an alternative to shooting on public lands.
 

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Yea wait till a NYC'er buys a weekend house near the range and gets it shut down with a call to their connected friends. I have seen them buy houses near a race track then complain about the noise. :bang:
 
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