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MIKE SAWYERS

Those beehives of activity that take place in our state capitals about this time of year have already started to buzz. Watch out you don’t get stung.

Yepper. Known in Annapolis as the General Assembly and in Charleston as the Legislature, the august members of those bodies have begun to conjure and cajole, which is to say that they will eventually “figger out” what ideas will become new laws and what ideas will not.

As in the past, we will attempt to keep you abreast of such legislative antics in regard to hunting and fishing.

Most of the time, it isn’t a good idea for politicians to tell us how, when, where or in what manner we can fish and/or hunt. There are, however, exceptions. For example, we would have zero Sunday hunting in Maryland were it not for thoughtful politicians who understood there is no reason that hunters be the only group in the state who are told they can’t do their thing on that day.

We are not to our destination yet on our journey to unbridled Sunday hunting, but we are farther down the road than we have ever been.

Politicians in West Virginia know they wouldn’t last long if they were to introduce an anti-hunting, anti-gun or anti-trapping bill, but in Maryland that is not the case.

Because Maryland is demographically and sociologically varied, we can expect some bills to be sponsored by suburban representatives whose constituents don’t like guns, hunting or trapping. Sometimes these bills deal only with certain counties, usually Montgomery or Ann Arundel. Occasionally, though not that much lately, representatives from down the way attempt to tell us what we can do with the wildlife in Almost Maryland, such as bears.

One time, they tried to tell us how old our children and grandchildren had to be to hunt.

You can go online and follow the posturing and puffing on a daily basis. Maryland’s web site is http://mlis.state.md.us and the West Virginia version is http://www.legis.state.wv.us.

I find Maryland’s site substantially easier to use than the one from the Mountain State.

In either event, play around with it for a while and you will soon discover the clicks and the links that will provide you with the information you seek.

Contact information for your state representatives and senators are there too.

On Saturdays, in our print edition, we list the contact information for the Maryland senators and delegates on our Editorial Page.

It is easier than ever for you to get involved in the legislation that will eventually have an impact upon your hunting and fishing. I suggest you stay tuned in and be willing to give your two cents worth.

You have 90 days in Maryland and 60 in West Virginia to have an impact.

Contact Outdoor Editor Mike Sawyers at msawyers@times-news.com.

 

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