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County Park Money Funds Shooting Park | News

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County Park Money Funds Shooting Park
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LAS VEGAS -- One Clark County commissioner and some parents are upset after learning that the county's park money isn't going to fix pools, it's going to pay for a shooting park.

The pool at Sunset Park is empty because county officials say they don't have the money for a new pump, and ultimately, major renovations. At the same time, the county gave more than $1 million to keep the Clark County Shooting Park open.

While gun owners fire off rounds at the shooting park on north Decatur, there's nothing but silence at Sunset Park's swimming pool. Carson Smith used to come to the pool with his family. "What a huge disappointment. Not everybody can afford a swimming pool," said Smith.

"We use the park fund to fund the shooting park to the tune of a million, a million-and-a-half dollars a year. At the same time, it's 102, 104 degrees and there's a lock on the gate to the pool," said Commissioner Steve Sisolak. He thinks a private company should run the shooting park.

"The county makes money from the rent that we receive from it. The county can open the pools when we're not subsidizing the operation with and the residents would get the benefit of both the swimming pool and the shooting park," he said.

"We're predicting within three years this park will pay for itself," said Don Turner, shooting park manager.

The county predicts the shooting park will be one of its few profitable operations if it meets its three year goal. Darren Harden, who is teaching his 12-year-old daughter to shoot, says this is a family activity as well. "I love it. I love it out here. It's only $7 a person."

Commissioner Sisolak says he's is talking to the county parks and recreation department about his idea to privatize the shooting park. He plans to bring it up at an upcoming commission meeting. Meanwhile, there are no immediate plans to fix Sunset Park's pool.

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