Legislation to Allow Some Rifles in the Shotgun Zone–Lame Duck or Dead Duck?November 27th, 2012
HB 5249 – Sponsored by Rep. Matt Lori (R-Constantine), this bill would allow for the use of certain firearms and ammunition in the southern shotgun zone during firearm deer season. The firearms included are:
- A shotgun with a smooth or rifled barrel;
- A .35 caliber or larger pistol loaded with straight walled cartridges;
- A muzzle-loading rifle or black-powder rifle loaded with black powder or commercially manufactured black powder substitute;
- NEW–A .35 caliber or larger rifle loaded with straight-walled cartridges with a minimum case length of 1.16 inches and maximum length of 1.80 inches.
These cartridges would be the same as handgun cartridges already legally used in the shotgun zone, and ammunition specifications show that these firearms and corresponding ammunition have equal or less power, velocity, and noise as current legal firearms. The bill was modeled after current Indiana law that allows the same firearms and rounds. Led by Robert Tyler, a member of Chief Okemos Sportsman’s Club, MUCC’s members passed a resolution at the Annual Convention in 2010 that supports the concept of this legislation.
The bill heard testimony back in May in the House Natural Resources committee, the entire House voted overwhelmingly (106-2) in support of this legislation in late September, but it has since been stalled in the Senate Outdoor Recreation and Tourism Committee.
We need your help to get this bill on the lame duck agenda! The Senate will adjourn on December 20th and the bill will have to be redrafted for the next session if we can’t move it in the next 3 weeks.
Please call Senator Goeff Hansen (Chair of the Senate Outdoor Recreation Committee) at 517-373-1635 and ask him to hold a committee hearing and pass HB 5249 before it’s too late! Then, call your local State Senator and ask them to approve this bill on the floor. Find your Senator’s contact information here.
Without your insistence and action, we fear this bill may die this year!