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Home near elementary school, daycare approved for firearms business

By Kendall Keys, Brianna Owczarzak

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    FLUSHING, Michigan (WNEM) — A mid-Michigan home, roughly a quarter-mile away from an elementary school, received the green light to operate a firearms business.

The matter may not be as controversial as it sounds.

The home in Flushing was approved for a special use permit by the Flushing Planning Commission to manufacture, alter or repair guns – a prospect that initially had some residents worried.

“I’m always uncomfortable with weapons being brought into a community, simply because of what’s happened all over the country including yesterday in Chicago and in Michigan,” said George Gray, Flushing resident.

Residents were concerned about the home less than a quarter-mile away from Springview Elementary School and close to a daycare being allowed the permit relating to firearms.

The zoning code for the city of Flushing subjects home occupations to several conditions, including being consistent with the character of the surrounding area.

“I think based on the information they were given, the commissioners probably made the best decision they could,” Gray said.

Clinton Hippensteel applied for the special use permit.

“This is mainly just a registration process,” Hippensteel said.

Hippensteel didn’t want to make a statement after the meeting but clarified he would not be manufacturing ammunition or even altering firearms.

Instead, he plans to maintain logs and records, and vet individuals who are buying and applying for firearm modifications.

“A lot of this stuff will be done online as a broker. You have to ship to a federal firearms licensed person in order for them to give you your weapon you buy over the internet. What I need this for is for the FLL application through the AFT to register these firearms as they’re manufactured,” Hippensteel said.

“The gentleman’s intent was much clearer when he explained it than it was in the application. The application made it sound like he was going to be manufacturing and repairing guns in his home. But I still have concerns. I’m just not a fan of weapons in the community,” Gray said.

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