Senator Dale M. Volker Passes Legislation To Expand Hunting Using Rifles On Southern Tier

William T. Stachowski

June 14, 2006

(Albany, NY) Senator Dale M. Volker (R-I-C, Depew) today passed legislation that will expand hunting, with the use of rifles on the Southern Tier. The bill would allow Chemung, Steuben and Yates counties to use rifles for hunting deer and bear.

"Last year, we passed legislation that would allow several counties located on the Southern Tier to use rifles for the hunting of bear and deer," said Senator Dale M. Volker. "Last year’s bill has proven to be a tremendous success. For several years, the growth in the population of deer in the Southern Tier have been profound. By allowing rifle hunting for deer and bear in this region of our state, we can humanely lower the deer population as they often die of starvation. It will also prevent human deaths from automobile accidents that have been rising from vehicles hitting deer on our highways. Additionally, our business community is also seeing increased economic activity, since sportsmen often purchase equipment, food and auxiliary supplies when they hunt with their wives, sons and daughters."

Senator Volker’s bill from last year, which is now law, allowed hunters to use rifles during open season for deer and bear in the counties of Allegany, Chautauqua, Chenango, Herkimer, Montgomery, Oneida, Oswego, Otsego, Schoharie and Tioga, as well as certain rural towns in Broome County in those areas east of the Susquehanna River. Today’s legislation would expand the use of rifles in hunting deer and bear to include Chemung, Steuben and Yates counties.

Robert Keicher, Regional Director and Director of New York’s Safari Club International said, "On behalf of all sportsmen and sportswomen of New York State, we would like to personally thank Senator Volker for his continuing support and dedication to all conservation issues brought forth by Safari Club International. We would also like to thank all those State Senate members for supporting the sportsmen and sportswomen of New York State. They are truly conservation minded."

There are more deer in New York State than there were 10 years ago and there are fewer deer hunters than in previous years. Crop damage and deer and automotive collision is increasing by significant numbers and it is costing New York State taxpayers millions of dollars in damages. Expanding the law to include hunting with rifles in the Southern Tier counties may help control the deer population in those areas and simultaneously stimulate economic activity for area businesses. Additionally, the firearms that have been traditionally legal for hunting big game have become safer and less damaging to the animal.