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KEVIN
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KC's Corner

First Day Bills

Wed, January 12, 2011

Well, that certainly didn’t take very long! The 97th General Assembly was sworn in at noon today, and when I checked the website later in the afternoon there were already over 100 bills filed. While I thought most of them would be petty, some of them actually do affect hunting regulations.


This first batch was all house bills. Guess the Senate was up too late raising our taxes last night!


Bear with me. I’ll have to work with the site for a while to make sure the formatting comes out…

HB0005 - WILDLIFE CODE-CASE DEFINITION, Sponsored by Rep. Mike Bost
Synopsis As Introduced
Amends the Wildlife Code. Changes the definition of “case” to mean any case, firearm carrying box, shipping box, or container acceptable under specified provisions of the Criminal Code of 1961. Effective immediately.

Not sure why this is needed, but it looks like it’s bringing the Criminal Code language into the Wildlife Code. Consistency is always a good thing.

HB0006 - WILDLIFE CODE-MUSKRAT HUNTING, Sponsored by Rep. John D. Cavaletto
Synopsis As Introduced
Amends the Wildlife Code. Provides that muskrats may be hunted at any time by gun. Permits muskrats to be taken by trap during an open season to be set annually by the Director of Natural Resources. Provides that it is lawful to shoot a .22 caliber rifle into the waters of this State when taking muskrats. Effective immediately.

HB0020 - WILDLIFE CODE- LOCAL DEER POP, Sponosred by Rep. Keith P. Sommer
Synopsis As Introduced
Amends the Wildlife Code. Repeals a provision concerning local control of deer population. Effective immediately.

This one is interesting. This section just passed in 2007. This section gave control of local deer herd to local forms of government. This forces the DNR to let the municipality use “alternative methods of deer population control” if they performed a “scientific study” over a period of 4 years. This would technically be the first year that local governments would be able to implement their plan, which could include methods such as sharpshooting, birth control, etc. Rest assured, hunting wouldn’t’ be an option, or they would have already implemented it under DNR’s watch. The statute was already set up to be repealed in 2014, but this bill would essentially put an end to this practice before it could even get started. I know the DNR adamantly opposed this when it first passed, and this would be a great bill to support to scrap it.

HB0025 - TIMBER BUYERS - PAYMENT TO DNR, Sponsored by Rep. Jim Sacia
Synopsis As Introduced
Amends the Timber Buyers Licensing Act. On or after the effective date of the amendatory Act, provides that a timber buyer who purchases timber in the State shall no longer be required to deduct from the payment to the timber grower a percentage of the purchase price and forward such amount to the Department of Natural Resources. Provides that upon the effective date of the amendatory Act, a timber buyer is no longer required to pay to the Department, when the periodic report is submitted, a percentage amount equal to the gross value of the timber utilized during the period. Effective immediately.

HB0112 - FIREARMS-CONCEALED CARRY, Sponsored by Rep. Michael Unes
Synopsis As Introduced
Creates the Family and Personal Protection Act. Permits the county sheriff to issue permits to carry concealed firearms to persons at least 21 years of age who meet certain requirements. Requires an applicant for a permit to have completed specified training requirements developed by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board consisting of classroom instruction and live firing exercises. Preempts home rule. Amends the Illinois Police Training Act and the Criminal Code of 1961 to make conforming changes. Effective immediately.

Admirable, but we all know how CC laws go in IL with Madigan still in power. It didn’t take long for it to show up this year. Look for other bills doing the same thing coming from the Senate and House both. There’s a few other firearm bills out there that I didn’t list. One is to prevent FOID information from being published and another bill prevents local units of government from imposing stricter regulations that what’s found under state guidelines.


That’s it for now. I’ll try to keep up on things over the next few weeks, but I’m sure it will get hectic.

(8) COMMENTS

An eye on Springfield legislation

Wed, January 12, 2011

Well, you guys have talked me into coming out of blogging retirement! Maybe someone can come up with a catchy name for my blog. As an accountant, and someone who follows outdoors politics in Illinois, apparently my creativity is lacking!

Jeff is wanting to stay on top of legislative and political issues happening in Springfield affecting our hunting rights, so I figured I’d offer to help out. This time of year it gets pretty hectic trying to keep up with all the crap happening in our capitol.

Today marks the day that the 97th General Assembly will be sworn in. Over the course of the next few weeks hundreds, if not thousands, of new bills will be introduced in Springfield. That means new lawmakers will be out to make a name for themselves in their districts, jumping on every special-interest cause they can get behind. This also means seasoned politicians will be introducing legislation without fear of repercussion close to election time. I predict there will be no shortage of bad bills affecting our hunting regulations.

But the politics don’t end there.

February is generally the time that the IDNR introduces their proposed Administrative Rule changes. These are the rules that govern specific parts of our hunting regulations. While these proposed regulation changes don’t go through the entire legislative process that a statute change would have to, the ad rules are generally harder to get reversed once they’re proposed by the DNR.

So, over the next several weeks I’ll do my best to keep you informed of any proposed changes for next year’s hunting season. And I’ll try to explain the process so it’s a little easier to understand. I don’t claim to know all there is to know, but I’ve been around the process long enough to know what to watch for.

Let me know if you have any questions, and I’ll do my best to answer them… or at least find the answer for you.

KC

(10) COMMENTS

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