Lawmakers in New York have introduced several pieces of legislation that will directly impact law-abiding sportsmen and women in the Empire State.
Assembly Bill 703, introduced by Assembly Member Deborah J. Glick (D-66), would prohibit the use of lead ammunition on “wildlife management areas, state forests, forest preserves, state parks or any other state-owned land that is open for hunting and on land contributing surface water to the New York city water supply.”
Legislating hunters into choosing another form of ammunition can not only be cost prohibitive, a decrease in the purchase of traditional ammunition has the potential to adversely affect conservation funding.
Hunters are the largest supporters of conservation through excise taxes levied on ammunition, firearms and hunting equipment by the Pittman-Robertson Act of 1937, which has generated more than $12 billion in funding for wildlife conservation programs.
Senate Bill 7542, introduced by Senator Monica Martinez (D-3) would prohibit hunting contests, stating “It shall be unlawful for any person to organize, sponsor, conduct, promote, or participate in any contest, competition, tournament, order by with the objective of taking the largest number of small game, wild birds, other than wild turkeys, and domestic game birds for prizes or other inducement, or for entertainment……”
In the Assembly “Same As” bill (Assembly Bill 722), the sponsor writes that “They are different from the average hunting experience since they are often rigged with animals that cannot escape. In many cases, these competitions are conducted in a party-like atmosphere and are more like slaughters or massacres and are unsportsmanlike,” which is a total and complete fabrication.
Hunting contests participants are still required to obey all local, state and federal wildlife laws and regulations. They are still required to obtain a hunting license and hunter safety course, and the New York Department of Environmental Conservation still sets all the bag limits determined by wildlife management science.