OGDEN -- A training facility for evasion and combat is hoping to make its home near Echo Canyon.
However, the proposal has some residents wondering if it will disrupt wildlife and bring in dangerous people hoping to get militia training.
Neither of the concerns will be a problem, said Eric Hernandez, ChamTech Operations Enterprise president.
He said residents have gotten information from distorted media reports and gossip. He is confident the company will lay fears to rest at a public hearing Wednesday night in Coalville.
"People don't realize what's going on, and they're scared of the big military coming in and scaring off wildlife and destroying environment. But that's not what we are at all," Hernandez said.
He said the 2,500-acre facility, which is in Summit County near the junction of Interstate 80 and Interstate 84, will be a place for commercial executives, business people who travel often, official law enforcement or military to come and train in such skills as navigation, how to evade people following them, escape tactics and avoiding surveillance.
Hernandez and his business partner, Anthony Sutera, ChamTech CEO, said they saw a need for this type of training and are trying to create a facility to do that. The company now sells surveillance equipment and ways of making information secure.
"They (executives) have come to us with quite a bit of concern. They do travel quite a bit and feel like someone's watching them and would like that extra knowledge or extra skill just for safety," he said.
By creating this facility, Hernandez said, the company will add revenue to the area while having minimal impact on the surroundings.
He said they will have a screening process to make sure those who come for training meet requirements. Fears about disrupting wildlife or blocking animal migration routes are unfounded, he said.
The whole point of training is to learn how to blend in and go undetected, so if the training is successful, the animals shouldn't know someone is there. Between eight and 15 people will be at the facility at any given time. The company wants to be as discreet as possible.
Utah is a great place for training because it is high-altitude, varied terrain, he said.
ChamTech's proposal was recently denied in Duchesne County.
The facility would probably run year-round with training for three weeks and a week to restock. A few sniper-training classes for military or SWAT teams are planned, but will be infrequent, Hernandez said.
It is not their goal to bring in tanks or regular military training, he said, adding that activity at the facility will go unnoticed by neighbors.
A public hearing will be at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Coalville.