BEREA, Ky. (FOX 56) — A major project headed to Berea will improve public safety and save taxpayers money. It’s also a huge asset to the city’s police department.
For nearly eight months, Berea Mayor Bruce Fraley says both agencies have been planning to construct a new firing range for officers. The current firing range sits on the city’s former sanitation lot. It’s near houses, and the hill that serves as a backdrop is only about 15 feet high. Officials worry a stray bullet could have major consequences, like hitting a home.
Berea Police decided to build a new firing range instead of renovating the current one because it’s a more affordable option. Upgrades to the current range would cost between $300,00 and $400,000. However, building a new facility costs $75,000. The new range will still be on the city’s former sanitation lot, but it’s moved to a safer spot that has 60% to 70% more banks.
The department is also buying a moving target robot. Most police firearm training is static but suspects in the real-world move. This technology is harder to hit, so it will improve the safety and accuracy of their aim.
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Fraley says the moving target was highly recommended, and taxpayers don’t have to spend a dollar. A $16,000 grant from the city’s insurance carrier, the Kentucky League of Cities, paid for the target.