Legislators introduce legislation to opt into Junior Hunter pilot program in Monroe County


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Republican Majority Leader Steve Brew and County Legislators Frank X. Allkofer and George J. Hebert, today joined community members to introduce legislation enabling a “Junior Hunter Pilot Program” in Monroe County.

The 2021-2022 New York State Budget included a pilot program expanding the opportunity for young hunters, aged 12 and/or 13, to hunt with firearms and crossbow through 2023 if a County authorizes such participation in the pilot program within their municipality through a local law.

According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), roughly 700,000 residents and over 50,000 non-residents hunt within the Empire State and Monroe County is no exemption.

The legislation include several safety measures that will ensure the learning experience is a safe one for all involved.

“While this is a pilot program set to be phased out in 2023, participating in the program will allow the State and our community to collect the information necessary to consider its permanent adoption,” A statement from GOP leaders reads.

While there is no deadline for counties to opt-in, resolutions must be approved by June 1 to be included within NYS DEC’s Hunting and Trapping Guide for this fall or by September 1 to be included on the NYS DEC’s webpage for this fall season.

“Monroe County is home to a diverse community and landscape that includes robust opportunity for healthy outdoor activities, like hunting,” Allkofer said in a statement. “Enabling the Junior Hunting Pilot Program here will allow for young hunters the ability to gain first-hand knowledge and experience – expanding opportunities, expertise, safety and ethics for generations to come.”

This legislation was submitted on May 10 and will considered by the Legislature’s Committee of the Whole on Tuesday, May 25. After favorable action at the Committee meeting, the Local Law will have a public hearing set prior to its adoption.

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