Tracking the Capitols is a source of legislation currently being tracked by the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation state policy team to keep you informed of the most pertinent and timely state legislation affecting hunting, angling, recreational shooting and trapping and other conservation issues. Inclusion in Tracking the Capitols does not necessarily constitute support or opposition to legislation by CSF and/or the CSF States Program.

Please visit our website for day-to-day updates by CSF's State Program Team on important sportsmen's legislation. To view past bills, please visit the Tracking the Capitols Archive under the Media Room tab on the CSF website.

Note: Bill sponsors who are members of the National Assembly of Sportsmen's Caucuses are noted in bold.

Due to the high volume of legislation, Tracking the Capitols only includes bills that have had status updates within the last week. With questions about specific bills, please contact your regional CSF staff member.
Updates for the week of 
June 19, 2017

NORTHEASTNORTHEASTERN STATES


Introduced: 06/13/2017
Sponsor: Senator Bruce C. Ennis, Co-Chair, Delaware Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Airbows/Airguns
Summary: Allows a pellet gun, airbow, and most other air guns to be possessed and utilized for hunting in Delaware, however, it does not change the classification of airbows and higher powered air rifles as firearms; specifies that the bill also does not change that possession of weapons such as "zip guns" and other created weapons are illegal and listed as a dangerous weapon.
Status: To House Committee on Judiciary June 21

Introduced: 02/15/2017
Sponsor: Representative Roland Danny Martin, Member, Maine Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Repeals the prohibition on the exchange for consideration of a moose permit in a designated hunting area, zone or season for another moose permit in a different designated hunting area, zone or season; requires the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to establish an online transfer system for moose permits through which transfers of designated hunting areas, zones or seasons may be accomplished.
Status: House commits to Join Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife on June 16
 
Introduced: 03/01/2017
Sponsor: Representative Lance Evans Harvell
Issue Brief: White-tailed Deer Management - Hunting as a Preferred Management Tool
Summary: Makes an amendment; expands the prohibition on baiting and feeding of deer during an open hunting season.
Status: Became law without Governor's signature on June 18

Introduced: 03/03/2017
Sponsor: Representative Dustin Michael White
Issue Brief: General
Summary: This bill allows a person who has legally harvested an animal to keep the unregistered animal until a registration station within a reasonable distance of the person is open if no registration stations within a reasonable distance of the person are open due to a holiday or other legitimate reason.
Status: Became law without Governor's signature on June 18

Introduced: 03/16/2017
Sponsor: Representative William R. Tuell, Member, Maine Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: White-tailed Deer Management - Hunting as a Preferred Management Tool
Summary: Makes the penalty for hunting over bait during an open season on deer a mandatory fine; provides for the one-year suspension of a hunting license.
Status: Signed by Governor on June 14

Introduced: 03/22/2017
Sponsor: Representative Karen A. Gerrish
Issue Brief: Crossbows
Summary: Expands crossbow hunting for deer into the regular archery-only season on deer. It removes the requirement that a person must have a valid hunting or archery hunting license or an apprenticeship hunter license or archery hunting license in order to hunt with a crossbow. It also lowers from 70 years of age to 65 years of age the age at which a person may hunt a wild bird or wild animal with a crossbow during any open season on that wild bird or wild animal.
Status: Became law without Governor's signature on June 21
 
Introduced: 04/04/2017
Sponsor: Representative Lloyd C. Herrick
Issue Brief: Guns (General)
Summary: Currently, the only nonconcealed firearm permit that the Commissioner of Public Safety grants to a person convicted of certain crimes, formerly known as felonies, is a permit to possess a black powder weapon, also known as a muzzle-loading firearm. This bill repeals the provisions in law allowing a person convicted of certain crimes that involve the use of a firearm against a person or any other dangerous person to obtain a permit to carry a nonconcealed firearm 5 years after the discharge of the person's sentences imposed as a result of the conviction or adjudication.
Status: Became law without Governor's signature on June 18

Introduced: 04/06/2017
Sponsor: Representative Ellie Espling, Member, Maine Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Public Access to Private Lands
Summary: Provides a specified sum per year to the Landowner Relations Fund, which funds the landowner relations program within the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to improve or maintain good relationships between landowners and outdoor recreationists.
Status: Placed on Special Appropriations Table on June 15

Introduced: 05/03/2017
Sponsor: Representative Stephen J. Wood, Co-Chair, Maine Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: This bill: 1. Moves the planning functions of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife from the Division of Planning, which no longer exists, to the Bureau of Resource Management; 2. Allows a person to capture and possess reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates native to this State and not listed by the department as threatened, endangered or of special concern without a permit, within certain possession limits; 3. Clarifies the purpose for each type of captive wildlife permit issued by the department and the issuance of 3-day hold game bird propagation permits and one-year game bird propagation permits and establishes fees for those permits; 4. Clarifies that the provision of law regarding release of wildlife into the wild applies to birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates; 5. Eliminates the requirement to band imported pheasants; and 6. Gives the Commissioner of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife the authority to open a town or a designated geographical area to the taking of antlerless deer within a wildlife management district that does not allow the taking of antlerless deer.
Status: Signed by Governor on June 14

Introduced: 02/15/2017
Sponsor: Senator Thomas B. Saviello, Co-Chair, Maine Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Forest Management
Summary: This bill implements the recommendations of the Commission To Study the Public Reserved Lands Management Fund. The bill establishes additional guidelines that must be followed by the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry before it may adopt any rule that would make changes to the annual allowable harvesting level for public reserved lands and nonreserved public lands. The bill directs the department to conduct a detailed forest inventory of the State's public reserved lands.
Status: Eligible for Governor's desk on June 19
 
Introduced: 02/15/2017
Sponsor: Senator Thomas B. Saviello, Co-Chair, Maine Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: This bill allows a person who has lawfully killed a wild animal to sell the meat of the animal at a wild game dinner or to the organizer of a wild game dinner. The bill defines "wild game dinner" as a single event where meat from a lawfully taken animal is cooked and sold to persons at the event for immediate consumption.
Status: In House. Placed in Legislative File (dead) on June 15

Introduced: 05/03/2017
Sponsor: Senator Kimberly C. Rosen
Issue Brief: Guns (General)
Summary: Transfers the authority to issue nonconcealed firearm permits in certain cases from the Department of Public Safety to the Office of the Governor.
Status: S igned by Governor on June 14

Introduced: 01/04/2017
Sponsor: Representative Mark L. Proulx, Member, New Hampshire Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Guns (General)
Summary: Allows the possession of a loaded rifle or loaded shotgun, or a rifle or shotgun with a cartridge in a magazine or clip attached to the gun in a motorhome when not driven; modifies the prohibition on having or carrying a loaded rifle or shotgun or a cocked crossbow in a vehicle; provides exceptions.
Status: Conference Committee Report not signed off on June 15
 
Introduced: 01/12/2017
Sponsor: Assembly Member Addie Jenne, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Off Highway Vehicles (OHV)
Summary: Amends the definition of all-terrain vehicles to include certain vehicles of up to seventy inches long and 1500 pounds which consist of a side-by-side passenger configuration and which include certain safety features; regulates the operation of all-terrain vehicles by the general public in the state forest preserve, Long Island central pine barrens area and Albany pine bush preserve.
Status: Am ended in Assembly Committee on Transportation on June 16

Introduced: 01/30/2017
Sponsor: Assembly Member Steve Englebright
Issue Brief: Hunter Recruitment, Retention, Reactivation
Summary: Relates to youth pheasant hunting days on Long Island.
Status: Passed  S enate on June 15
 
Introduced: 02/14/2017
Sponsor: Assembly Member Dan Quart
Issue Brief: Knife Ban Repeal
Summary: Amends the Penal Law; relates to the definition of a gravity knife.
Status: S ubstituted for S 4769A; Passed Senate on June 21

Introduced: 05/11/2017
Sponsor: Assembly Member Addie Jenne, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Relates to authorizing angling by a single individual with up to three lines in freshwater; extends effectiveness of provisions for two years.
Status: Passed Senate on June 15
 
Introduced: 06/06/2017
Sponsor: Assembly Member Didi Barrett, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Enforcement
Summary: Makes it a misdemeanor to take or attempt to take big game outside of legal hunting hours; makes it a class D felony if another person is injured during the commission of such and makes it a class E felony where someone inflicts or witnesses the infliction of an injury and does not render aid.
Status: To Assembly Committee on Environmental Conservation on June 16
 
Introduced: 01/04/2017
Sponsor: Senator Elizabeth Little, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Conservation Tax Incentive
Summary: Establishes a forestry stewardship and habitat conservation credit for personal income and business franchise taxes.
Status: Passed Senate. To Assembly Committee on Ways and Means on June 20

Introduced: 01/05/2017
Sponsor: Senator Rich Funke, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Seniors, Veterans, and Active Duty Military Hunting and Angling Privileges
Summary: Amends the Environmental Conservation Law; provides hunting safety instructors with a free hunting license in consideration for such services for the next license year beginning after the date the course was completed.
Status: Passed  S enate. To Assembly Committee on Environmental Conservation on June 21

Introduced: 01/20/2017
Sponsor: Senator Joseph A. Griffo, Co-Chair, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Apprentice Hunting License
Summary: Amends the Environmental Conservation Law; relates to lowering the age for universal hunting licenses from 14 years old to 12 years old.
Status: Passed  S enate. To Assembly Committee on Environmental Conservation on June 19

Introduced: 01/26/2017
Sponsor: Senator William J. Larkin
Issue Brief: Senior, Veterans, and Active Duty Military Hunting and Angling Priveleges
Summary: Amends the Environmental Conservation Law; provides for lifetime sportsman licenses for honorably discharged, disabled veterans.
Status: To Ass e mbly Committee on Environmental Conservation on June 15

Introduced: 01/27/2017
Sponsor: Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Amends the Environmental Conservation Law; relates to the definition of non-ambulatory for purposes of non-ambulatory hunting permits.
Status: Passed Senate. To Assembly Committee on Environmental Conservation on June 13
 
Introduced: 02/23/2017
Sponsor: Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Senior, Veterans, and Active Duty Military Hunting and Angling Priveleges
Summary: Amends the Environmental Conservation Law; decreases fees for hunting, fishing and bowhunting for non-resident disabled veterans.
Status: Pass ed Senate. To Assembly Committee on Environmental Conservation on June 19

Introduced: 05/09/2017
Sponsor: Senator David J. Valesky, Co-Chair, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: White-tailed Deer Management - Hunting as a Preferred Management Tool
Summary: Amends the Environmental Conservation Law; requires the department of environmental conservation to report on deer management techniques in urban and suburban areas.
Status: Passed Assembly on June 15
 
Introduced: 05/11/2017
Sponsor: Senator James L. Seward, Member, New York Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Enforcement
Summary: Makes it a misdemeanor to take or attempt to take big game outside of legal hunting hours and makes it a class D felony if another person is injured during the commission of such; relates to failure to render aid.
Status: From Senate Committee on Rules on June 19
 
Introduced: 02/07/2017
Sponsor: Representative Harold A. English, Member, Pennsylvania Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Enforcement
Summary: Relates to hunting and furtaking; provides for killing game or wildlife by mistake; relates to hunting and furtaking licenses; provides for period of revocation.
Status: Passed House. To Senate on June 21
 
Introduced: 04/12/2017
Sponsor: Representative Karen Boback, Member, Pennsylvania Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Fishing Reciprocity; Seniors, Veterans, and Active Duty Military Hunting and Angling Privileges
Summary: Relates to fishing licenses; provides for active duty military fishing reciprocity; relates to hunting and furtaking licenses; provides for active duty military hunting reciprocity.
Status: Passed House. To Senate on June 21



SOUTHEASTSOUTHEASTERN STATES

Introduced:  02/08/2017
Sponsor: Representative Pat McElraft, Member, North Carolina Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief:  Freshwater Angling Access
Summary:  Amends various environmental laws.
Status:  From Senate Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate: reported favorably and placed on Senate calendar for June 26

Introduced:  03/08/2017
Sponsor: Representative Lee Zachary, Member, North Carolina Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief:  Modern Restraining Animal Traps
Summary: P ermits fox and coyote trapping in Yadkin County.
Status:  From Senate Committee on Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources: reported f avorably, and re-referred to Senate Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate on June 21

Introduced:  04/05/2017
Sponsor: Representative Chris Millis, Member, North Carolina Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief:  Sunday Hunting
Summary:  Expands the use of firearms for hunting of wild animals and upland game birds on Sunday; allows hunting of migratory birds on Sunday.
Status: From Senate Committee on State and Local Government: reported favorably with substitute. In Senate. State and Local Government committee substitute adopted on Senate floor, and re-referred to Senate Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate on June 20
 
Introduced:  03/20/2017
Sponsor:  Representative Graig Meyer
Issue Brief:  General
Summary:  Prohibits hunting on private property in Orange County while under the influence of an impairing substance.
Status:  From Senate Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate: reported favorably and placed on Senate calendar for June 26
 
Introduced:  02/15/2017
Sponsor: Senator Jim Davis, Member, North Carolina Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief:  Hunting Dogs
Summary:  Implements the recommendations and guidelines of the national association of state public health veterinarians regarding the management of dogs, cats, and ferrets exposed to rabies
Status: Passed House on June 22

Introduced:  02/20/2017
Sponsor:  Senator Andy Wells
Issue Brief:  General
Summary:  Removes safety hazards and restore the state's natural riverine resources by facilitating the removal of obsolete and unwanted dams.
Status:  Withdrawn from House Committee on Rules, Calendar, and Operations of the House, and re-referred to House Committee on Environment on June 15
 
Introduced:  03/15/2017
Sponsor: Senator Tom McInnis, Member, North Carolina Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief:  General
Summary:  Creates a coyote tagging and bounty program in Richmond County.
Status:  Withdrawn from calendar and re-referred to House Committee on Wildlife Resources on June 22
 
Introduced:  03/29/2017
Sponsor: Senator William Cook, Member, North Carolina Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief:  Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA)
Summary:  Creates a program for the permitting of marine aquaculture activities; requires the division of marine fisheries of the Department of Environmental quality to request the issuance of federal rules to allow marine aquaculture in federal Waters off the coast of the state.
Status:  Placed on House calendar for June 22.
 
Introduced:  06/14/2017
Sponsor:  Representative Larry Householder
Issue Brief:  General License, Seniors Vets
Summary:  Allows a landowner's grandchildren, of any age, to hunt or fish on their property without obtaining a hunting license or permit; allows certain partially-disabled Veterans to receive a free license, permit, or wetlands habitat stamp.
Status:  T o House Committee on Energy and Natural Resources on June 20  


MIDWESTMIDWESTERN STATES


Introduced: 02/07/2017
Sponsor: Representative Norine Hammond, Member, Illinois Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Amends the State Forest Act; provides that plants and plant materials secured or produced shall be used exclusively for conservation purposes, such as for wildlife habitat, erosion control, energy conservation, natural community restoration, general reforestation, research, commemorative plantings, and educational programs such as Arbor Day unless otherwise agreed through a memorandum of understanding with the Green Industry Association which would allow the sale of plants as liner stock.
Status: To Governor on June 16
 
Introduced: 02/08/2017
Sponsor: Representative Jerry Costello, Member, Illinois Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Licenses (General)
Summary: Amends the Wildlife Code; provides that except as provided in the Code, it is unlawful to possess the green hides of fur bearing mammals without a valid hunting or trapping license; provides that the annual fee for each resident fur buyer's permit shall be a specified amount; provides that all fur buyers and non-resident auction participants shall maintain records of the receipt, collection, purchase, and sale of green hides of fur-bearing mammals.
Status: To Governor on June 21

Introduced: 02/08/2017
Sponsor: Representative Tom Demmer
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Amends the Highway Code; provides that money received by the State from the federal government under the Recreational Trails Program shall not be considered for use as aid in construction of highways, and shall be placed in the Park and Conservation Fund.
Status: To Governor on June 21

Introduced: 02/09/2017
Sponsor: Representative Jerry Costello, Member, Illinois Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: A mends the Wildlife Code; repeals provision providing that it is unlawful to use any crossbow for the purpose of taking any wild birds or mammals except as provided in the Code; repeals Sections concerning the use of crossbows; provides for an immediate effective date.
Status: From House Committee on Rules: Approved for consideration, Motion to Concur in A mendment Number 1 on June 21

Introduced: 4/10/2017
Sponsor: Representative Stephen Dwight
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Provides for the gear authorized for oyster harvest on Calcasieu Lake and Sabine Lake.
Status Became public law (Act No. 259) on June 19

Introduced : 4/10/2017
Sponsor: Senator Bret Allain, Member, Louisiana Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Angling Access
Summary: Provides that the owner of an enclosed estate is bound to compensate his neighbor for acquiring a right and servitude of passage of a waterway and must indemnify his neighbor for the damage he may occasion.
Status: Became public law (Act No. 244) on June 16

Introduced : 1/25/2017
Sponsor: Representative Mary Whiteford, Member, Michigan Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Prescribed Fire
Summary: Provides that before conducting a prescribed burn, the department shall attempt to notify by telephone and electronic mail the township supervisor and the primary public safety answering point of each township where the prescribed burn is to take place; the department shall maintain a record of the notification attempts; provides definitions; relates to the department of natural resources.
Status: To Governor on June 19
 
Introduced : 6/20/17
Sponsor: Representative Dave Maturen, Member, Michigan Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Exotic Invasive Species
Summary: Commemorates July 2-8, 2017, as Aquatic Invasive Species Awareness Week.
Status: Passed House on June 20
 
Introduced: 5/08/17
Sponsor : Representative Joel Kleefisch, Co-Chair, Wisconsin Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Authorizes a person to hunt from a motor vehicle equipped with a mechanized lift.
Status: To Assembly Committee on Rules on June 16
 
Introduced:   2/15/17
Sponsor: Senator Kathleen Vinehout, Member, Wisconsin Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief:  Seniors, Veterans, and Active Duty Military, Hunting and Angling Privileges
Summary: Relates to an exemption for resident disabled veterans and for recipients of the Purple Heart medal from the cumulative preference system for issuing wild turkey hunting licenses and tags.
Stat us:  Signed by Governor Scott Walker, Member, Governors Sportsmen's Caucus, on June 21
 
Introduced: 2/21/17
Sponsor: Senator Terry Moulton, Co-Chair, Wisconsin Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: Chronic Wasting Disease
Summary: Relates to rules that prohibit feeding deer in certain counties.
Status: Placed on Calendar by Assembly Committee on Rules on June 14

Introduced:  05/04/17
Sponsor : Senators Terry Moulton and Mark Miller, Co-Chairs, Wisconsin Legislative Sportsmen's Caucus
Issue Brief: General
Summary: Relates to a uniform end date for certain open hunting and trapping seasons.
Status: To Assembly Committee on Rules on June 20


WESTWESTERN STATES  


Introduced:  02/06/2017
Sponsor:  Senator Anthony J. Portantino
Issue Brief: General
Summary:  Amends an existing law which prohibits a person from making more than one application to purchase a handgun within any a certain period. Makes the prohibition and a certain dealer delivery prohibition applicable to all types of firearms. Excepts from that prohibition the purchase of a firearm by a person who possesses a valid, unexpired hunting license, and the acquisition of a firearm at specified charity fundraising events.
Status: In Assembly. Read second time and amended. Re-referred to Committee on Public Safety on June 19
        SCI SCI is a proud partner of CSF and
sponsors in part TRACKING THE CAPITOLS

 
 
Working with Congress, governors and state legislatures to protect and advance hunting, angling, recreational shooting, and trapping.
 
For more information on the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation visit: 
www.SportsmensLink.org

For additional information on legislation included in this report please contact the appropriate representative: 
 
Senior Director, Northeastern States Brent Miller, at 202-543-6850 x13, or brent@sportsmenslink.org
Director, Southeastern States Bee Frederick, at 202-590-0475, or bee@sportsmenslink.org
Senior Director, Midwestern States Chris Horton, at 501-865-1475, or chris@sportsmenslink.org
Senior Director, Western States Andy Treharne, at 303-789-7589, or andy@sportsmenslink.org


Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter View our videos on YouTube View on Instagram