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Administrative Rules Committee Strips Dove Rule of Statewide Traditional Ammunition Ban!

Friday, August 19, 2011

The nation was watching this week as the Administrative Rules Committee met to review the Natural Resource Commission's final rule for Iowa's first dove hunting season in nearly a century.  In a 9-1 bipartisan vote, legislators overwhelmingly rejected the NRC's underhanded attempt to include a statewide traditional ammunition ban in the final dove rule.  This vote allows for a "session-delay" of the lead ammunition ban, meaning the legislature will have to act during the next legislative session to remove the ban from the final dove rule.  However, Iowa's first dove season will proceed and will not include a traditional ammunition ban.   

During a recent NRC meeting last month scheduled to set bag limits and the length of Iowa's first dove season since 1918, commissioners launched a surprise attack by passing a ban on the use of traditional ammunition while hunting doves.  No population-level impacts on doves or other species have been shown to result from the use of traditional ammunition and the NRC seemed to be relying on emotion and politics rather than sound science.  There were reports of involvement of some national anti-hunting groups that would like nothing more than to see hunter numbers decline with a traditional ammunition ban.  The appointed, seven-member commission flagrantly usurped the authority of the legislators who debated the same ban and overwhelmingly rejected it during this year's passage of the dove hunting bill.

Here are three reasons why the use of traditional ammunition should NOT be banned:

  • No scientific studies regarding traditional ammunition have been shown to have any population-level impacts on doves or other species. In fact, doves are the most popular and abundant game bird hunted in America with population levels at all-time highs.
  • The price of non-traditional ammunition with similar performance characteristics is significantly higher and will keep many hunters from taking part in the historic dove season, especially in these dire economic times.
  • In addition to the lack of sound science, the Commission enacted the lead ammunition ban in an underhanded fashion with no public comment or notice. 

The NRA will keep you informed as this issue moves through the state legislature next year.  Please take a moment to thank the following individuals for their help in stopping the traditional ammunition ban:

Governor Terry Branstad

Senator Dick Dearden (D-34), bill sponsor

Administrative Rules Committee Members who voted "yes."
State Senators:
Senator Wally E. Horn (D-17), Chairman

Senator Merlin Bartz (R- 6)

Senator Thomas G. Courtney (D-44)

Senator John P. "Jack" Kibbie (D-4)

Senator James A. Seymour (R-28)


House Members:
Representative Dawn E. Pettengill (R-39), Vice Chairman

Representative David E. Heaton (R-91)

Representative Rick Olson (D-68)

Representative Guy Vander Linden (R-75)

To read NRA's letter to Governor Branstad, please click here.

To read NRA's joint letter to committee members, please click here.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.