SACRAMENTO, CA –-(Ammoland.com)- SB 1221, legislation authored by Senator [Animal Rights Supporter] Ted Lieu (D/28-Torrance) that would outlaw the use of dogs for hunting bears and bobcats in California, passed off of the Senate Floor on the evening of August 27th on a 22 to 13 vote.
The bill will now go to the Governor's desk for his consideration. The Governor has until September 30th to sign or veto the bill.
In addition to authorizing the use of dogs for scientific research and depredation purposes, recent amendments – opposed by COHA, California Houndsmen for Conservation, the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance, California Beekeepers Association, California Farm Bureau Federation, and others – include authorizing the Fish and Game Commission to establish a “Hound Tag Program” which would require that each dog used to pursue any mammal have a license tag bearing a unique identifying number and be microchipped.
Further, the amendments allow DFG to charge a fee to cover the cost of the program. That means deer hunters, pig hunters, rabbit hunters, raccoon hunters – any hunter that uses a dog to pursue a mammal – is now impacted and taxed by this bill. By establishing an unprecedented “use tax” for this method of take, SB 1221 goes far beyond the original intent of the bill and penalizes tens of thousands of hunters who don't even hunt bears and bobcats. This amendment was included in an effort to offset the $400,000 annual loss of revenue to the Department of Fish and Game estimated by the Department of Finance.
It should also be noted, in addition to dozens of organizations and thousands of individuals, 29 California Counties strongly oppose SB 1221.
COHA NEEDS YOUR HELP! IF WE ARE TO DEFEAT THIS BILL ON THE GOVERNOR'S DESK, YOUR VOICE MUST BE HEARD! CLICK HERE FOR THE GOVERNOR'S CONTACT INFORMATION AND A SAMPLE OPPOSITION LETTER.
OUR MISSION STATEMENT
The California Outdoor Heritage Alliance (COHA) is a 501(c)4 non-profit political advocacy organization dedicated to the promotion of wildlife conservation and the protection of our hunting heritage. COHA was created to enhance the political effectiveness of hunters and other wildlife conservationists and enthusiasts in the halls of our State Capitol and beyond. For further information on COHA and its member organizations, please visit us at www.outdoorheritage.org