SACRAMENTO (August 22, 2012) - Assemblyman Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber) announced that Senate Bill 1221, that bans hound hunting of bear and bobcat, passed off the Assembly Floor in a party-line vote, with only Democrats voting in favor of the bill.
"There is a broader purpose of this bill," said Nielsen. "To erode hunting in California. This is another one of the series of bills that are intending to chip away at hunting."
Nielsen said that another attempt at limiting hunting in California is the intent to change the name of the Department of Fish and Game to the Department of Wild Life.
Nielsen explained that hunting bears and bobcats with the aid of hound dogs is a method used by researchers and government officials to humanly capture subjects, and is also an important tool in controlling the bear and bobcat populations in California.
By enacting this bill the Department of Fish and Game estimates a loss of $278,000 annually from reduced bear and bobcat tag purchases; as well as a potential increase of $250,000 annually needed to develop and implement a new monitoring program in controlling the black bear and bobcat population.
"While California is in the fiscal waste basket the Legislature is preoccupied with hound dogs-Absurd," said Nielsen.
SB 1221 will next be taken-up for a concurrence vote in the Senate.