Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP)
Grants to Montana shooting clubs, nonprofit organizations, school districts, and local governments to enhance and develop shooting ranges within the state. Funding may be used for capital acquisitions of real property, improvements to existing ranges, new range development, earthwork, and reasonable grant application costs. Grantees must allow use of the facility by hunter education classes for no fee.
When the department receives more eligible applications for grants than funds are available, the department may include, but is not limited to, the following criteria to disperse funds and approve grants:
a. Needs of the community determined by distance to applicant shooting range and annual club membership/range use;
b. Population of the county compared with numbers of shooting ranges allowing public use within the county;
c. Disabled accessibility improved to existing shooting range as a result of the project;
d. Types of firearms and archery equipment that can be used at the proposed project; range safety improved as a result of the proposed project; and
e. Impacts to the human environment.
In situations where grant requests exceed the amount of available funding, FWP uses the following criteria to score and rank grant requests. Overall, the goal is to develop or enhance shooting ranges that provide safe, accessible, and diverse opportunities for a variety of shooting interests statewide.
1) Range serves local community. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the distance between the range and the nearest community where the majority of members/visitors reside.
2) Range serves people of the local and regional community. Requests will be scored and ranked according to a ratio of existing and anticipated shooters (members and visitors) utilizing the range annually and the total population of the county.
3) Range serves as host for a variety of designated shooting events. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the total number of existing and anticipated designated shooting events held annually.
4) Range serves as host for a variety of educational shooting activities (e.g., 4-H, hunter education, and boy scouts) annually. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the total number of existing and anticipated educational shooting activities held annually.
5) Range provides access to shooters. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the degree to which they provide public access for shooters. Ranges that are only open to members score lower than those ranges that are maintained and open to public use for a reasonable fee.
6) Proposed project improves accessibility for handicapped shooters. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the degree to which the project improves the accessibility of the site for handicapped shooters.
7) Proposed project enhances the safety of the range. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the degree to which they enhance the safety of the range. Requests with purposes related to safety improvements rank higher than those whose purpose is not directly related to safety.
8) Proposed project mitigates environmental impacts associated with shooting activities. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the degree to which environmental impacts associated with existing and proposed shooting activities are minimized.
9) Proposed project accommodates new or additional types of shooting activities. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the degree to which they add new shooting activities to the site (has to be a specifically designated shooting area).
10) Proposed project is a partnership with other organizations. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the degree to which additional funding sources have been secured.
11) Proposed project fulfills an unmet shooting need in the community. Requests will be scored and ranked according to the number and type of existing shooting ranges within the county and/or FWP administrative region.
GrantWatch ID#: 177165
All billing on a proposed project must be completed by June 15 of the fiscal year the money is awarded.
Grants are made to private shooting clubs, private organizations, local governments, and school districts.
An applicant that is a private shooting club or a private organization must be a nonprofit corporation pursuant to Title 35, chapter 2, with an organizational structure, officers, directors, and a registered agent.
To be eligible for grant assistance, a private shooting club or a private organization:
(a) (i) Shall accept in its membership any person who holds or is eligible to hold a Montana hunting license and who pays club or organization membership fees; (ii) may not limit the number of members; (iii) may charge a membership fee not greater than the per-member share of the club's or organization's reasonable cost of provision of services, including establishment, improvement, and maintenance of shooting facilities and other membership services; and (iv) shall offer members occasional guest privileges at no cost to the member or invited guest and shall make a reasonable effort to hold a public sight-in day each September, when the general public may use the shooting range for a day-use fee or at no cost; or
(b) shall admit the general public for a reasonable day-use fee.
To be eligible for grant assistance, the applicant shall allow safe shooting of hunting arms. Hunting arms include shotguns, archery equipment, black powder arms, rifles, and pistols.
A unit of local government or a school district shall compete on an equal basis with other applicants and shall provide access to its facility for a reasonable fee to any person holding or eligible to hold a Montana hunting license.
A grant may not be used for any expendable supplies for a shooting range.
Applicants must provide matching funds in either cash or in-kind contributions. The match must represent $1 in value for each $1 of the grant. In-kind contributions include but are not limited to labor, materials, and real property. Existing assets and existing shooting range development may not apply to the match.
The submission deadline for shooting range grants is each February 1. You can apply online or use the paper application. Applications must be postmarked on or before February 1.
As long as funds are sufficient to allocate grants to all eligible applicants, grants will be awarded beginning on July 1 of each year.
Reimbursement requests will be based upon actual costs or in-kind contributions, verified by receipts and documentation that the work was completed.
Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.
Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks
Conservation Education Bureau
1420 East Sixth Avenue
P.O. Box 200701
Helena, MT 59620