The Press Newspaper
The crack of gunfire in some areas of Oregon has prompted residents to complain to the city.
Oregon Councilman Mike Sheehy wants the city to revisit its laws regarding the discharge of guns in the city limits.
Sheehy said at a committee of the whole meeting on Monday that there have been complaints in the Starr Extension area.
He said he spoke with Police Chief Mike Navarre on the matter.
“The last time we addressed the discharge of guns in the city limits was way back before there was any housing around Eagles Landing and housing developments on Seaman Road. It would be interesting to revisit that topic,” said Sheehy.
Administrator Mike Beasley said there are limits to how close a firearm can be discharged near a residence as well as other buildings in the city.
“I’ve talked with some citizens on the issue you’ve raised. We have begun an effort to try and deal with it, with the existing laws as well,” said Beasley. “I don’t think we necessarily have to wait for the law to change to solve some of the problems referenced in those complaints.”
Mayor Mike Seferian said guns cannot be used within 400 feet of a residence or subdivision.
Some of the gunfire people are complaining about, he said, is not from hunting but from target practice.
“It happens in my old neighborhood. I’ve actually spoken to those people who are shooting,” said Seferian.
He said council should tread slowly because gun owners are sensitive about their right to own and use guns.
“I remember when we had meetings about shooting and hunting. We had a very spirited crowd. Even if they are not the ones shooting them at the time, they sure love to have that right,” said Seferian. “It isn’t a topic we want to jump into quickly and start making changes with the way it was drafted. I think we’re already covered.”
Seferian said he sympathizes with residents who endure the sound of target practice – “maybe an hour and a half straight.”
“They may get away with that on the Fourth of July, and someone might mistake that as fireworks. The incidents that come up seem to be in certain areas and are isolated,” he said.
He would prefer to talk to the gun owners “and let them know they could likely lose some of those rights if they don’t use common decency with whatever they’re shooting out there.”
“We hope we can make success in that way,” said Seferian. “If we can’t, we’ll have to see what other steps we can take. I’ll stay in touch with the people involved and try and see that it doesn’t get out of hand.”