Civilian Marksmanship Program

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The official federal seal of the CMP

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) is a U.S. government-chartered program that promotes firearm safety training and rifle practice for all qualified U.S. citizens with special emphasis on youth. Any U.S. citizen who is not legally prohibited from owning a firearm may purchase a military surplus rifle from the CMP, provided they are a member of a CMP affiliated club.[1] The CMP operates through a network of affiliated shooting clubs and state associations that cover every state in the U.S. The clubs and associations offer firearms safety training and marksmanship courses as well as the opportunity for continued practice and competition.

History[edit]

The Office of the Director of Civilian Marksmanship (DCM) was created by the U.S. Congress as part of the 1903 War Department Appropriations Act. The original purpose was to provide civilians an opportunity to learn and practice marksmanship skills so they would be skilled marksmen if later called on to serve in the U.S. military. Formation was precipitated by adoption of the M1903 Springfield rifle as the national service arm. Civilians experienced with popular contemporary lever-action rifles were unable to sustain an equivalent rate of fire from the unfamiliar bolt action M1903 rifle.

Over the years the emphasis of the program shifted to focus on youth development through marksmanship. From 1916 until 1996 the CMP was administered by the U.S. Army. Title XVI of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1996 (Public Law 104-106, 10 February 1996) created the Corporation for the Promotion of Rifle Practice & Firearms Safety (CPRPFS) to take over administration and promotion of the CMP.[2] The CPRPFS is a tax-exempt non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation chartered by the U.S. Congress, but is not an agency of the U.S. government (Title 36, United States Code, Section 40701 et seq.). Apart from a donation of surplus .22 and .30 caliber rifles in the Army's inventory to the CMP, the CMP receives no federal funding.

The National Board for the Promotion of Rifle Practice (NBPRP), an advisory board to the Secretary of the Army (SA), which was created in 1903, was disestablished by this law and replaced by the CPRPFS. The initial board was appointed by the SA and is responsible to develop all policies and procedures for the implementation of all aspects of the CMP.

Programs[edit]

Among the various activities and programs administered by the CMP are pistol and rifle shooting competitions (for example, at Camp Perry, Ohio) and the sale of surplus U.S. Army rifles. The sale of rifles in particular has been quite popular, with the CMP offering M1 Garand, M1903 Springfield, M1917 Enfield, M1 Carbine, .22 caliber (surplus and commercial target), and air rifles (commercial target) for sale to members of affiliated organizations. Ammunition and other accessories are also sold through the CMP's online store.

The CMP maintains two main offices: CMP North at Camp Perry near Port Clinton, Ohio, and CMP South in Anniston, Alabama.

Competition Tracker[edit]

In July 2003, the CMP launched Competition Tracker, the first online results system for the shooting sports. Originally designed specifically for the National Trophy matches, the CMP now uses Competition Tracker as the official results bulletin of every CMP competition. In March 2006, during the JROTC National Championships, the CMP used Competition Tracker, in conjunction with Sius Ascor Electronic Score Targets, to provide real time results on the web. On average, it was 45 seconds from the time a shooter fired a shot to when his or her shot value was seen on the Internet. The CMP continues to be innovative today, they are currently researching Visual Image Scoring technology that will allow competitors to score traditional paper targets electronically.

CMP and the military services[edit]

The U.S. armed forces are authorized to wear marksmanship competition badges, in accordance with each service's regulations, which are awarded based on points earned at CMP sponsored competitions. The following is a list of marksmanship competition badges authorized for wear on U.S. military service uniforms based on points earned at CMP competitions:

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Civilian Marksmanship Sales". Retrieved 2008-12-19. 
  2. ^ "Title XVI" (PDF). National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1996 (Public Law 104-106). National Institute of Standards and Technology. 10 February 1996. pp. 331–338. Retrieved August 19, 2010. [dead link]

External links[edit]