By Brett Stayton, Mid-Atlantic States Coordinator
Recently, the Pennsylvania Senate Game and Fisheries Committee approved a Sunday hunting-related bill, SB 147, with an 8-3 vote. This bill is sponsored by Senator Dan Laughlin and Pennsylvania Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus Co-Chair Senator Jim Brewster.
If enacted, the bill would provide the Pennsylvania Game Commission with the authority to regulate hunting on Sundays, and would also tighten up Pennsylvania’s trespass laws, which was a concern raised by farmers and other private property owners.
“This is the necessary first step in the legislative process to authorize hunting on three or four Sundays throughout the year,” Brewster said. “Our goal in moving the bill is to generate dialogue and compromise on the number of days allowed for hunting, protections for farmers, management of public lands and dealing with chronic wasting disease.”
Pennsylvania’s limitations on Sunday hunting remain some of the most restrictive in the country, inhibiting hunting participation, private property rights, economic activity, and conservation funding. The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) has long supported the repeal of Sunday hunting restrictions and has actively worked with caucuses in neighboring states to make significant strides on this issue in recent years. CSF will continue to work with members of the Pennsylvania Sportsmen’s Caucus on issues related to increasing access and opportunity for Pennsylvania’s more than 1.4 million sportsmen and women.
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- Improve hunter and target shooter involvement in regulatory and legislative processes. (13.89%)
- Enact or expand temporary hunter education deferral programs (apprentice license programs, multiyear options, programs for all first-time hunters regardless of age, and programs promoting hunting of multiple game species). (12.50%)
- Offer shooting sports and hunter education as school activities and recreation programs. (59.72%)
- Link existing programming into family-oriented organizations (such as churches and home-school groups) where participants will have the social support to continue. (13.89%)