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Bill to legalize fenced hunting dies in Senate

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By Jacob Rund

A bill to legalize fenced hunting preserves - and subject them to state regulation - failed in the Indiana Senate on Tuesday when only 25 of the chamber's 50 senators voted yes.

It takes 26 votes to pass a measure.

Senate Bill 404, authored by Sen. Carlin Yoder, R-Middlebury, would have instituted licensing for the operation of hunting preserves and legalized the ones already in business.

"There are four new preserves or hunting preserves that exist in the state of Indiana, without any regulations of any real form," which allows them to do whatever they want, Yoder said. "I am not a person who supports government involvement if at all possible, but in this case I think it's time that we ask government to step in and regulate these organizations."

The hunting of deer on fenced preserves has been a major issue in the General Assembly over the past few years.

"Right now, because of court rulings that have just come down over the past few months, it appears that we are looking at a Wild West situation if we don't do something," Yoder said. "If we don't act, anything could go."

The bill failed 25 yeas to 23 nays.

Because Tuesday was a deadline for Senate action, the bill is dead for the session.

Jacob Rund is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news service powered by Franklin College Journalism students and faculty.

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