A new bill is proposing to change Maine’s long standing law against Sunday hunting

Published: Mar. 15, 2023 at 8:47 PM EDT
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - “The ban on Sunday hunting is an economic injustice issue and this bill will help right that injustice,” Jared Bornstein with Maine Hunters United for Sunday Hunting said.

A new bill was introduced at the State House Wednesday by Maine Hunters United for Sunday Hunting.

They say the bill is a compromise after listening to all parties, including those who oppose hunting on Sundays.

”The biggest concern that people bring up over why they don’t want Sunday hunting or the biggest objection we always hear are that they don’t like gunshots and gun firearms on Sunday, and they want to feel safe in the woods,” said Republican Rep. Billy Bob Faulkingham of Winter Harbor.

The new measure will allow Sunday hunting with a bow and cross bow which they feel will address the safety concerns.

”It is only archery weapons at a very limited range and lethal range, you have silence to it, so you don’t have loud gunshots so nobody will even know that it is happening,” Billy Bob Faulkingham said.

Tom Doak, Executive Director of Maine Woodland owners says the new bill has been introduced before within the 38 failed attempts over the last 45 years to change the law.

He says it is more than just safety concerns.

”The compromise that has developed over generations, it says six days a week, you do not have to get permission and you don’t pay unlike most States where you pay for the right to access land for hunting. You don’t pay in Maine, and you don’t have to get permission. In return, the landowners get a day where they know they can fully enjoy their property and not have somebody hunting,” Doak said.

Maine Hunters United says one study shows 48 percent of people support the new proposal and says it would provide economic relief to many.

”When their goal is to open up their budget a little bit for the winter to maybe pay for more heating oil, more food, there are other things. If you harvest a deer, you get meat that you don’t have to buy in Hannaford, go look at meat prices right now,” Bornstein said.

They say they’re looking forward to getting the bill on the governors desk.

”We have the final draft of the bill. We are collecting co-sponsors for it right now and the bill will be printed in its final Ld version next week,” Bornstein said.