This week, Governor Mike Pence (R) signed Senate Bill 57 approving the ballot language. Furthermore, Governor Pence also signed House Bill 1231 introduced by State Representative Lloyd Arnold, which will expand deer hunting opportunities across Indiana. HB 1231 will take effect immediately.
The November ballot question will be:
“Shall the Constitution of the State of Indiana be amended by adding a Section 39 to Article 1 to provide that the right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife shall be forever preserved for the public good, subject only to the laws prescribed by the General Assembly and rules prescribed by virtue of the authority of the General Assembly to:
- (1) promote wildlife conservation and management; and
- (2) preserve the future of hunting and fishing?”
House Bill 1231 greatly expands deer hunting opportunities in Indiana by directing the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to establish a rifle season for deer hunting between June 30, 2016 and June 30, 2020. Under this new law, DNR may authorize four annual rifle seasons for deer hunting in order to assess the impact of these additional hunting seasons. The addition of a rifle season will make hunting more accessible and enhance hunter retention and recruitment efforts in the state.