Pennsylvania: Sunday Hunting Clears another Hurdle with Historic Vote on the House Floor

Contact: Joe Mullin, New England States Coordinator

On October 30, Pennsylvania Senate Bill 147 (S 147) passed the House with a strong, bipartisan vote of 144-54.  This marks the most significant progress that any effort to repeal the more than three-century-old prohibition on Sunday hunting has ever achieved.

S. 147 would authorize Sunday hunting in the Commonwealth on three Sundays – one during the archery deer season, one during the firearms deer season, and one to be left up to the discretion of the Pennsylvania Game Commission. S. 147 is sponsored by Sen. Dan Laughlin – a Co-Chair of the bipartisan and bicameral Pennsylvania Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus – and is co-sponsored by many other Caucus members, including fellow Co-Chair Sen. Jim Brewster. Presently, only the hunting of foxes, coyotes, and crows is legal on Sundays in Pennsylvania. The passage of S. 147 will provide additional time for families and friends to enjoy the outdoors, expand private property rights, help to ensure our time-honored traditions are passed down to the next generation, generate economic activity in rural economies, and advance conservation funding for a variety of game and non-game species and their habit.

The bill now heads to the Senate for a concurrence vote, and it is expected that the Senate will take action on the bill when they meet for session during the week of November 18.

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A key component of the American System of Conservation Funding, the Pittman- Robertson Act directs excise taxes on firearms, ammo, and archery equipment to wildlife conservation. Since its inception in 1937 the Act has generated more than $12 billion towards conservation. However, there has been a loss of 5 million hunters in the past decade. One proposed solution to help fund conservation is to dedicate lottery proceeds for conservation purposes. Would you support this effort in your state?

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