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California gun company leaves California for Shiner

By JR Ortega
May 1, 2013 at 12:01 a.m.
Updated May 2, 2013 at 12:02 a.m.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry gives Shield Tactical the official welcome to Shiner on Wednesday. The gun shop and training center moved from California to Texas because of the state's strong Second Amendment support.

When Texas Gov. Rick Perry reached out to draw gun shop and training center Shield Tactical to Shiner, company president John W. Harrington had a rapid-fire response - yes.

The California-based company opened up shop in Shiner two months ago and was officially welcomed by the governor Wednesday.

Frustration over California's Legislature debating over gun control laws is what ultimately led Harrington to move the company.

"It took me about half a second," Harrington said in a phone interview about the decision to move. "It's been a positive step for us, and every day is a new confirmation for that decision."

For now, the company is operating with six employees, Harrington said, but the goal is to have 15 employees - this does not include trainers for the center.

Perry touted the company during the welcoming event for keeping true to its Second Amendment right and assured company officials that Shiner would be a great home.

Harrington agreed Shiner is a great fit.

"Shiner has done a fantastic job of hosting a lot of industry; it's also been able to have its small town identity.

Shield Tactical joins notable Shiner companies, Spoetzl Brewery, Kaspar Wire Works and Texas Black Rifle Co.

"Economic development is at the very core of Texas' mission," Perry said in a news release. "We've done an effective job over the past decade making some tough decisions and a rededicating to the fiscally conservative principles that encourage job creation."

Shield Tactical was not the only shop being drawn out; the governor also reached out to more than 30 firearms manufacturers across the country to consider calling Texas home.

The idea to move to Texas in one that should be strongly considered, said Harrington, who describes his company as a family business that is related through its strong support of the Second Amendment.

Still, Harrington hopes California will "restore its sanity."

"My hope for the conservative citizens is to make their voices heard and take their state back," he said of California.



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