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Hap Baker Firearms Facility in Westminster to add new building for range officers office

With the blessing of Carroll County’s Board of Commissioners, the Hap Baker Firearms Facility in Westminster will be adding a building to serve as an office for its range officers, replacing the repurposed construction trailer currently in use.

At the board’s meeting Thursday morning, the commissioners unanimously agreed to give the county’s Department of Recreation and Parks the go-ahead to award the $98,780 contract for the project to GRC General Contractors Inc., a company that rec and parks Director Jeff Degitz said was previously involved in work at the facility.

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The contract will be paid out of the facility’s enterprise fund, with revenue generated on-site.

During his opening remarks to the board, Degitz said the facility has been using a trailer as an office for the officers for some time now, adding that it is in “poor condition.” Stephen Wantz, the board’s president, agreed, later calling the project “long overdue.”

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“I’ve been out there, and the trailer’s kind of leaning toward the [Northern Landfill],” he said. “It’s not a good look.”

In response to a question from Commissioner Richard Weaver, Degitz said it’s also possible that the project could reduce noise in the surrounding neighborhood, as the new building will be physically connected to the firing range. However, he said this would be an “unexpected benefit,” adding that the facility is looking into other means of reducing noise in the area.

Since the facility is open fewer days during the wintertime, Degitz said construction on the project is planned to start early next year to reduce the impact on the public.

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