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Friday, 15 November 2013 09:27

Senator Pavlov's anti-poaching bill heads to Gov. Rick Snyder

(AREA) -- On the eve of the opening of Michigan's firearm deer season, legislation to toughen penalties for illegally killing a protected animal or trophy buck in the state has passed the Michigan Legislature and moves to the Governor's desk to be signed into law. Senate Bill 171, sponsored by Senator Phil Pavlov of St. Clair Township, would increase existing fines for illegally killing a protected animal and impose additional penalties for poaching trophy bucks. A second bill, sponsored by Senator Tom Casperson of Escanaba, would increase fines and penalties against violators that trespass on private property. The new measures are consistent with policies in neighboring states. Supporters say that each time a poacher takes a large buck, that is one less opportunity for a Michigan hunter to have that exciting experience. The progressive penalty system includes a $1,000 fine for any deer taken with or without antlers, an additional fine of $1,000 for any antlered deer, and antlered deer with 8 to 10 points taken would see an additional $500 assessed for each point. Antlered deer taken with 11 or more points would result in an additional $750 for each point. A point is defined in the bill as being at least one inch long as measured from its tip to the nearest edge of the antler beam.