In Mascoutah, Illinois, the Caseyville Rifle and Pistol Club has been in a six-year legal battle with St. Clair County, which was determined to close the range and appropriate the land.
Recently, the Club had a big win, when the 5th District Appellate Court in Mount Vernon ruled that the County must pay $42,221 to the Club for its legal fees.
“In addition,” reported the Belleville News Democrat, “the three-judge appellate panel ruled the county must re-file its eminent domain lawsuit against the gun club if it plans to seize the shooting range south of Scott Air Force Base.”
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That panel also ruled that, “a county lawsuit seeking to shut down the shooting range must go to trial to determine if the range poses a hazard to low-flying aircraft at Scott.”
“On the eminent domain suit we won,” said Randy Seper, Caseyville Club president. “We won the money case. They did reduce the award, but we won the money case.”
“Seper also predicted the gun club would prevail in a hearing on whether to shutter the shooting range. The gun range opened in February 2007; since then, there have been zero reports of problems, Seper said.”
“We think we'll win the injunction hearing,” he added. “Even if we don't, even if they beat us in the injunction … the law says it's inverse condemnation. You have to pay me just like it's eminent domain.”
Translation: St. Clair County would have to pay the gun club $1.5 million to buy out the site.
Source: Belleville News Democrat 3/25/11
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