Voters Eye More Hunting in Wis. State Parks
Wisconsin residents overall voted 2,922 to 1,922 in favor of expanding the hunting season in state parks, with 63 counties approving of the measure, eight counties rejecting it and one county with a tied vote, the Wausau Daily Herald reported.
The results of the vote are non-binding and will be sent to the Natural Resources Board, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Legislature as recommendations.
The DNR sought public input on expanding the hunting season in state parks from two months to more than seven months each year. Residents of every county voted on proposed rule changes relating to fish and wildlife management.
The DNR released the vote results Tuesday (April 9).
The Sporting Heritage Bill was signed into law last spring and expanded hunting and trapping in state parks as of Jan. 1. Under the law, hunters will be allowed to use high-power rifles, and hunters and trappers will be allowed to approach within 100 yards of what are called “designated use areas,” including hiking trails, campgrounds and picnic areas.
The law originally allowed hunting in the parks from Oct. 15 to the Thursday before Memorial Day, but the state’s Natural Resources Board, which sets policy for the Department of Natural Resources, limited hunting to regular hunting seasons, such as the gun deer and turkey seasons.