Buckeye Firearms Association Endorses HB296, Apprentice Hunting License Bill

November 14, 2005

CLEVELAND - Buckeye Firearms Association is excited to announce its endorsement of House Bill 296. The bill’s primary sponsor, Representative Steve Buehrer (R-Delta), has again taken the lead to improve hunting and firearms laws in Ohio.

House Bill 296, commonly titled the Apprentice Hunting License Bill, will:

  • Permit new hunters and trappers, either young people or adults, to purchase an apprentice hunting/trapping license prior to the completion of an Ohio Hunter Education or Trapper Education Course.
  • The new or apprentice hunter may then hunt under the guidance and mentoring of a licensed adult. The adult is defined as someone age 21 or over for this legislation.
  • The adult mentor must be immediately with the apprentice.
  • Apprentice licenses are limited to 3 purchases (years). After that the Ohio Hunter Education or Trapper Education Course is required.

    "Buckeye Firearms Association recognizes the importance of sharing the outdoor heritage of hunting and trapping with new participants," said Larry Moore, Buckeye Firearms Association Region Leader and winner of the 2005 USSA Patriot Award. "Studies done by several national organizations indicate a decline in the participation in hunting. We are thankful that Ohio does not have a minimum age restriction on hunting. We believe that leaving the decision as to when a young person is mature enough to participate in hunting and trapping is a decision best left to the parents." A licensed adult must accompany hunters under the age of 16.

    "We recognize the importance of the special early youth hunting seasons implemented by the Ohio Division of Wildlife as prime opportunities for young people to experience hunting," Moore continued. "We thank the Division of Wildlife for implementing the youth hunting and trapping licenses at a reduced cost."

    While hunter education programs have been a factor in the declining rate of hunting incidents, it may also be a barrier to some who want to try hunting. Mere attendance in a classroom does not make a safe hunter - it takes practice in the field. Today, parents and other adults mentor the young hunter following a hunter education class. It is in the field that the concepts and principles of safe hunting are put into action. We believe that the apprentice hunter, under the guidance of the adult mentor, will be a safe hunter.

    Buckeye Firearms believes in removing barriers for all Ohioans for firearms ownership and the opportunity to hunt or trap. Introducing young people to the shooting sports, hunting, and trapping are good for the future of conservation and firearms ownership.

    We thank Representative Buehrer for taking the lead with this legislation. We join the US Sportsmen Alliance, National Wild Turkey Federation, and National Shooting Sports Foundation in endorsing this legislation, and we urge sportsmen to write their legislators asking for their support for HB 296.

    A political action committee founded in 2002, the Buckeye Firearms Association is a non-partisan PAC promoting education and grassroots activism. Buckeye Firearms Association is devoted to improving Ohio laws and regulations pertaining to owning and shooting firearms.

    To view a copy of House Bill 296 as Introduced, CLICK HERE.

    Journalists who wish to receive more information or additional comment may click here for contact information.

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