Today, Governor Martin O’Malley (D) signed into law the following four pro-hunting bills:
Senate Bill 231 – sponsored by state Senator George Edwards (R-1), SB 231 would allow bowhunters, who are otherwise authorized to carry a handgun, to carry a handgun for protection while hunting in Deer Management Region A. While afield, bowhunters are vulnerable to outdoor crime and dangerous wildlife, and should be allowed to carry a firearm for protection. SB 231 passed in the state Senate by a 43 to 2 vote. The measure passed in the House by a 120 to 9 vote.
Senate Bill 472 – also sponsored by state Senator Edwards and cosponsored by Senators Christopher Shank (R-2) and Ronald Young (D-3), allows any game bird or game mammal, except migratory game birds and wetland game birds, to be hunted on a Sunday on specified public and private land during the open season for that game bird or game mammal in Allegany, Garrett and Washington Counties. SB 472, as amended, passed in the House of Delegates by a 124 to 10 vote and concurred in the Senate by a 44 to 2 vote.
Senate Bill 473 - also sponsored by Senator Edwards and cosponsored by Senators Shank and Young, allows the hunting of deer on specified property from the first Sunday in October through the second Sunday of January in Frederick County. SB 473, as amended, passed in the House of Delegates by a 119 to 15 vote and concurred in the Senate by a 45 to 1 vote.
Senate Bill 966 - sponsored by state Senators Roy Dyson (D-29) and Thomas Middleton (D-28), establishes a program in Charles and St. Mary’s Counties to train rifle shooters to hunt deer for the purpose of controlling the deer population in those counties. SB 966, as amended, passed in the House of Delegates by a 125 to 6 vote and concurred in the Senate by a 45 to 1 vote.
Thank you to Senators Edwards, Shank, Young, Dyson and Middleton for their leadership and support for the hunting rights of Maryland residents; as well as every state legislator who voted for Senate Bills 231, 472, 473 and 966.