NH Governor Hassan Signs Silencer Hunting Bill

By Dean Weingarten

New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan
New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan
Dean Weingarten
Dean Weingarten

Arizona – -(Ammoland.com)-
Governor Maggie Hassan, (D) New Hampshire, has signed HB 500 the bill that legalizes hunting with silencers in New Hampshire. From the American Silencer Association:

The American Suppressor Association is proud to announce that after 3 years and a lot of teamwork, suppressor hunting is now legal in the Granite State! Earlier today, Gov. Maggie Hassan signed Rep. John Burt’s (R-Hillsborough)HB 500 into law, making New Hampshire the 40th state to legalize suppressor hunting. We could not be more proud to have been part of the team that got this bill introduced, passed through both houses of the legislature, and finally signed into law!

From the HB 500:

1 Title. This act shall be known as the “The Hunters Hearing Protection Act.”

2 Findings. The legislature finds that:

I. Firearm suppressors lessen the report of a firearm by approximately 30 decibels, thereby allowing hunters to more fully enjoy and participate in the sport.

II. Hunting with sound suppressors will help to lessen the hearing damage many hunters suffer from.

III. Hunting with a sound suppressor allows new, inexperienced hunters to hunt without ear plugs or ear muffs enabling them to hear important instructions from their mentors (parents, grandparents, or other responsible adults) who are hunting with them.

IV. Suppressors decrease the chance of asymmetrical hearing loss or shooters ear.

V. Hunting with suppressors lessens the ambient noise heard by neighbors who may be on adjoining property where hunting is taking place. While it does reduce the noise level of a firearm, the firearm is still loud enough so that a neighbor will know someone is shooting.

VI. In the 34 states that allow some form of hunting with suppressors not a single state has moved to repeal this practice. It makes for safer shooting and better neighbors.

VII. Firearm suppressors are heavily regulated by the federal government, which requires a $200 tax be paid, a background check conducted, fingerprints be given, sign off by a local chief law enforcement officer, and approximately a 9-month wait to get the paperwork completed before taking possession of a suppressor. This virtually guarantees that abuses with legally owned suppressors are extremely rare.

The growth in the use and popularity of suppressors has, politically, been like the sprouting of mushrooms after a rainstorm in the spring.  Everything necessary has been there, waiting.  And this is just the beginning.  There are likely a million legal silencers, suppressors, or gun mufflers, whatever you wish to call them, in the United States at this time.  The demand has been suppressed because of idiotic laws passed in the 1930s, as “progressives” demanded more control over everything related to guns.  The laws never had a good reason for existence, but the burdensome taxes and irrational regulations managed to chill the natural demand for gun mufflers.  Even with that horrible burden, the number of legal suppressors is growing exponentially.

In most countries of the world, silencers are easier to own and use than firearms.  If you can own a firearm, owning a suppressor is not a problem.

U.S. legislators are being educated about the insanity of current U.S. law.  If Donald Trump is elected President, it is likely that current law will be reformed. The proposed reform would put silencers in the same legal category as rifles and shotguns, instead of being treated like artillery and land mines.  When the requirements to own a silencer no longer takes mounds of paperwork, six month wait times, and $200 in taxes for a $100 product, silencer ownership will skyrocket.

The Hearing Protection Act, H.R. 3799, is unlikely to pass this year.  Proponents believe that President Obama would veto it.  It is a very simple bill:

To provide that silencers be treated the same as long guns.

Representative Matt Salmon from Arizona introduced the bill.

In Europe, silencers are treated as the safety devices they are.  A way to reduce noise pollution and to safeguard hearing.  They use is encouraged, and sometimes required.   That commonsense approach is coming to the United States.
©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

Link to Gun Watch

About Dean Weingarten;

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Great news for NH! However, I’m quite surprised, and, frankly, disappointed that Ammoland is calling them “silencers.” They don’t silence a damn thing. Far from it! Also, the wording of this law is troubling in the sense that those who promoted and signed it don’t understand what a suppressor does: “Hunting with a sound suppressor allows new, inexperienced hunters to hunt without ear plugs or ear muffs…” If you’ve ever shot or been next to a suppressed firearm, you know that ear protection is still a pretty damn smart decision. While these devices do in fact suppress the sound of… Read more »

Rich gartner

Great to read dialogue with clarity and correct language prevailing over misuse of terms to put a negative spin on a positive effort.

Gene Ralno

I wonder if she thinks throwing this little bone will endear her to those for whom she has so little regard.


I live in Pa. and agree the language misleads the anti gun people as described by “Wild Bill” . Proper language would quiet the anti gunners, at least lessen the arguments brought by them. I am a 60 year old who has hunted for approximately 40 years and have shooters ear and tinnitus in both ears, I used hearing protection on the range but not in the field. If suppressors were legal My hearing would be different.


Let’s stop calling them ‘silencers,’ alright? I’m a little annoyed a site such as this is doing so. It’s just too confusing to anti-gun advocates who are already overcome with unnecessary fear — advocates who could make things difficult. People like Governor Mark Dayton of Minnesota. This man almost didn’t sign a bill making suppressors legal because he actually believed more people would kill others since no one would be able to hear the shots with a “scilencer.” True story.

Wild Bill

You are right, Jason, we don’t need to use the language of the left. We do need to take control of the conversation by using correct descriptors. By the way, are you from Minnesota (the land of blond hair and blue noses)? Have you ever heard of a little town called Blooming Prairie?


Either is appropriate, especially since Hiram Maxim, the inventor, called them silencers. The problem isn’t terminology, it’s Hollywood and lack of understanding of the realities of the device.

Wild Bill

In Hiram Maxim’s time, there was no huge group of politicians and useful idiots calling for gun confiscation, and people were properly blamed for their misuse of firearms. Jason did not say that terminology was inappropriate, he said Let’s stop calling them silencers. If we are going to win the minds of voters, then we need to use language favorable to us.

Jorge Norberto Pedace


Jim Lowe

Had to throw this into Google Translate to figure out exactly what was said. IT IS OBVIOUS THAT THE MUFFLER IS AN INSTRUMENT FOR ITS CHARACTERISTICS, CAN NOT BE SOLD TO ANY CIVIL ONLY IF PROPERLY AND REGULATING strict control. MOREOVER, THERE AND EARS PROTECTIONS FOR ADDITION TO CONSIDER LONGER EXIS TEN TEAMS THAT PRESERVE AUDITIVO.ADEMÁS DAMAGES THAT WE MUST REMEMBER OPENWORK THE FIRING OF THE TRIGGER IS NOT SO SEVERE I’m going to disagree with what I think you’re saying (I know Google Translate isn’t perfect, so this might not be 100% correct). I am in my mid 30’s,… Read more »

Linda Dionne

You were too lazy, or cheap, or whatever, to use hearing protection but you will go to all of the trouble and expense to get a silencer for your gun. It just doesn’t make any sense and for that reason I think there is more to his than what we are hearing from the hunters. Perhaps it gives you one more unfair advantage in your killing of animals. It gives the sloppy and unskilled shooter one more opportunity to get a shot off after the first one misses. At a time when we should be restricting guns and its paraphernalia… Read more »


It is a real shame you have no clue what you are talking about ad no facts to support your position.

Wild Bill

So, Linda, your solution is that everyone for miles around should wear hearing protectors just because I want to shoot? How do I notify all those people. Surpressors are required in Europe so that people are not bothered by one person’s shooting noise.

Jim Lowe

Linda, Glad to hear that you never made a mistake you had to learn from as you grew older. I look at it from a different perspective. Just because the media and Hollywood call them silencers, doesn’t mean they are silent, so no, you won’t get an additional shot off. What it will do, is allow the hunter to actually be able to hear the animal coming in, take the animal responsibly, and not damage their own hearing. Or, alternatively, go to an IDPA or 3 gun match. Would be nice to able to talk to the other competitors, rather… Read more »


and WHAT makes then not fit to be sold to “civil” (decent) folks? There is NO reason gummint need to control such a device They mandate then on all our cars.

Hearing muffs and earplugs can be worn, but have the disadvantage of reducing ALL sound… even important sounds the shooter needs to be able to hear.

And one cannot expect his neighbours to put on hearing protection when I shoot in my own property, with is both safe and legal.


Let’s not stop with suppressors. Let’s get rid of the NFA entirely next year!

Ask your candidates if they support if they will introduce the needed legislation. It’s a good way to filter out the “I’m for the second amendment but” idiots for anyone with a crowded primary.