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Colfax approves ordinance to allow gun shop downtown

By LeAnn R. Ralph

COLFAX — A gun shop will soon be added to the businesses in downtown Colfax.

The Colfax Village Board approved an ordinance amendment at the January 14 meeting to amend the permitted uses in the downtown business district to allow retail sporting goods.

The ordinance amendment was necessary to allow Dr. L. R. Phillips to proceed with plans for opening a gun shop next to the Colfax post office.

Village Trustee Chris Olson wondered what kinds of weapons would be available for sale at the gun shop.

Dr. Phillips said his goal was to have a “hunting shop” with hunting guns and scopes.

The shop also will carry hand guns, he said, adding that he has no desire to sell any kind of assault weapons or extended clips.

Assault weapons are difficult to obtain now after the school incident in December, and the extended clips also are difficult to obtain, Dr. Phillips said.

A total of 20 six and seven year-olds, along with six school staff members, were killed with an assault weapon at a school in Connecticut last month.

Anyone who wants to buy the extended clips can order them through a catalog cheaper than what they can be purchased through a store, Dr. Phillips said.

Village Trustee Scott Gunnufson wondered about security for the gun shop.

The doors will have security devices, and security cameras will be in place as well, Dr. Phillips said.

“The last thing I want is something to get broken into,” he said.

The location of the shop next to the post office provides added security because of the large planter in front of the building, Dr. Phillips said.

The planter means there will be no “crash and carry” — that is, the planter will prevent anyone from driving a vehicle through the front of the building to steal weapons, he said.

The ordinance amendment will become effective upon publication in the Colfax Messenger, which is expected to be included in the January 23 edition, said Jackie Ponto, village administrator clerk-treasurer.

The Colfax Village Board approved the motion for an ordinance amendment on a vote of six to one.

Chris Olson, Gunnufson, Village President Gary Stene, Mark Halpin, Beverly Schauer and Richard Johnson voted in favor of the motion.

Village Trustee Susan Olson voted against the motion.