|By State Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne)
Earlier this month, legislation that would allow the Pennsylvania Game Commission to lift the long-standing ban on most Sunday hunting was reported out of the Senate Game and Fisheries Committee by a vote of 8-3. It was the first step in a long process that was cheered by proponents of the proposal.
Pennsylvania is currently one of only three states that do not permit expanded hunting on Sundays. The others are Maine and Massachusetts.
Sunday hunting is already allowed for game such as pheasants and chukars. Sportsmen are also permitted to hunt foxes, crows and coyotes on Sundays. Senate Bill 147
would open up Sunday hunting to additional species.
The issue has been under discussion at the state Capitol for many years. However, there has never been enough legislative support for passage of a bill to expand the Sunday hunting provisions.
Supporters argue that Sunday hunting would help to boost the declining number of hunters in the state. They also say it would boost Pennsylvania’s economy. A recent study by the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee found that implementation of Sunday hunting during all seasons could result in up to $804 million of economic activity, supporting nearly 7,500 jobs and generating over $56 million in state and local taxes.
Those opposed to Sunday hunting say non-hunters need to have at least one day to enjoy the outdoors without hearing gunshots or fearing of being mistaken for game.
House Bill 147
will next be considered by the full Senate. If it passes there, the measure will then go to the House of Representatives for review and a possible vote.
In recent years, I’ve heard from many constituents on this issue, both pro and con. But now that the debate has been renewed, I would like to hear from more of you. Please email me at email@example.com
or call my district office at (570) 453-1344 to express your views on Sunday hunting in Pennsylvania.
Representative Tarah Toohil
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact: Rep. Toohil’s Office