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Monday, January 11, 2010

Delegate Janis Introduces Pro-rights Bill

Delegate Bill Janis (and VSSA member) has once again introduced legislation that will prevent localities from preventing hunting near a subdivision. HB 236 makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor to discharge a firearm towards a subdivision within the range of the firearm, or to discharge a firearm towards any person or structure, when no barrier exists that would prevent the projectile from striking a person or animal or structure. But with these changes, a locality would no longer be able to prohibit hunting generally within a half-mile radius of a subdivision, but would still be able to prohibit hunting within a subdivision.

More localities are trying to pass legislation that restricts the right of gun owners and this includes attempts to limit our ability to hunt in localities where a subdivision may be placed in otherwise rural or low population density settings. Localities try "one size fits all" approaches with the goal of protecting home owners without looking at the unintended consequences. This important bill if passed will protect people and homes within a subdivision without adversely affecting the rights of sportsmen to hunt.

Delegate Janis introduced this bill in 2007 but it was killed in the State Senate using a parliamentary procedure. VSSA will be working hard for the bill's passage this year.

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