HB296: House PROPONENT hearing scheduled November 16
House Bill 296 has been added to the House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee agenda for proponent testimony on November 16 at 8:30 a.m. in the Statehouse Room 116.
The purpose for Wednesday's hearing is so that the committee may hear testimony on HB296 from persons wishing to provide public testimony.
USSA 2005 Patriot Award-winner Larry S. Moore will be on hand to offer proponent testimony on behalf of the Buckeye Firearms Association and the US Sportmen Alliance.
Filling these hearing rooms as this legislation moves forward will make a serious statement of support. The anti-hunting lobby will no doubt be on hand to attack this common sense legislation, so if your schedule allows, please consider making the trip to Columbus to support HB296 and its sponsor, Rep. Steve Buehrer.
For more information on HB296, see: HB 296 seeks to improve hunting opportunities in Ohio.
Click on the "Read More..." link below for exerpts from a Cleveland Plain Dealer op-ed entitled "Special seasons popular with young hunters"...
November 11, 2005
Plain Dealer Columnist
The special seasons for young hunters have been wildly popular around Ohio, adding hunters to the rolls at a time when license sales have been in decline.
A couple of weekends of small game hunting, two days of waterfowling and even a spring turkey weekend - all before the regular seasons begin - have been the incentive for kids and their parents. The youngsters are supervised by non-hunting adults and, with a head start on the season, have a better chance of success than hunters during the regular campaigns.
Many kids enjoy being in the woods, and many want to be hunters like their parents. Ohio Division of Watercraft officer Randy Battista of Tallmadge makes sure his kids have an enjoyable time while hunting and are eager to go again.
Both his son, Parker, 11, and daughter, Calia, 13, have taken deer with both crossbow and shotgun and will hunt during the special youth deer gun season. Parker will have to target a doe after harvesting a Summit County buck on opening day of Ohio's archery season. The youngsters also have had enviable success in the turkey woods.
Because of the influx of young hunters, there has been an impressive jump in youth license sales to hunters who are 17 or younger. Ohio has no age restriction for buying a hunting license. There were 34,459 youth hunting licenses sold in 2002. That jumped to 39,491 in 2003 and 41,562 in 2004, more than a 20 percent increase over two seasons.
Ohio Division of Wildlife officials know deer hunting and the special seasons for kids are responsible for the soaring youth license sales. Last year, 39,876 of the 41,562 youth hunters purchased a deer permit.
Helping parents to afford another hunter in the family has been a reduction in the cost of youth deer permit. The Ohio Wildlife Council pared the cost of a youth tag to $12 in 2004, half the price of a $24 adult deer permit.
The Ohio Division of Wildlife also wants to give kids and adults the chance to try hunting before having to take a mandatory hunter education course. Rep. Stephen Buehrer, a Republican from Delta, Ohio, introduced ODOW-backed legislation this summer to establish a mentoring program for new hunters of any age. It would allow a new hunter to buy an apprentice hunting license, which would be good only if the apprentice hunter is in close proximity to an adult mentor while in the woods and fields.
The legislation is part of the Families Afield program, a team effort of the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance, National Wild Turkey Federation and National Shooting Sports Foundation. Families Afield wants to eliminate age restrictions for hunters and promote mentoring programs to encourage new hunters.
Click here to read the entire column in the Cleveland Plain Dealer.