Hunters Allowed to Use Rifles in Livingston County, NY

A temporary decision has hunters hopeful

rifle hunting law

Hunters in Livingston County, NY are relieved today. They have just received news they won’t have to retire their rifles this hunting season.

In 2014, hunters were given legal permission to use rifles while hunting big game. This law was only temporary. It was recently brought up in the Senate again for reconsideration.

The law allowed hunters to use longer-range weapons for whitetail deer and black bear hunting. It was scheduled to expire on October 1.

According to the Democrat & Chronicle, right now the law has been passed by the Senate. New York Senator Catharine Young, R-Olean, and Senator Patrick Gallivan, R-Elma have reported they are sponsoring the permanent authorization of rifles for big-game hunting. Both of them authorized it the first time they were considered, but they were unable to make it permanent because all new laws must have a two-year trial.

Hunting is popular in Livingston County. It’s part of resident’s livelihood and it helps the economy.  Senator Young told the Democrat & Chronicle, “Permanently allowing rifle hunting will continue to grow Livingston County’s economy and keep local rifle hunters from having to travel to neighboring counties to hunt.”

Livingston is not the only county that has allowed hunters to carry a rifle. Wyoming, Allegany, Steuben, Ontario, and Genesee have already passed rifle legislation. For the entire state of New York, 43 counties allow their hunters to use rifles.

Concerns About Rifle Use in Hunting

Safety concerns, like the power and distance rifle shots provide, have made the issue a contentious one. Rifles can shoot much farther than shotguns, which means that accidents are much more likely.

Research done by the Democrat & Chronicle shows rifle users are much more safety conscious, helping to boost support for rifle use. Those using rifles often take their time with the gun and ensure they have accurate aim before shooting. They most likely know what the gun can do, so hopefully they respect it and its power.

In addition to research about the use of rifles by hunters, data shows the 2015-2016 hunting season was the safest on record for the area.

With this information, Livingston County hunters are happy they can use what works when out hunting this season. Many of them will likely invest in a new rifle since they know they will be able to use it for a long time with the law likely becoming permanent.

What are your thoughts on this? Are you a hunter who uses a rifle? Sound off in the comments.

Update: As of July 2016, the decision to allow hunting rifles was made permanent.