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Lucas Bill Would Clear Semi-Automatic Weapons For Varmint Hunters

Submitted Fri, 04/25/2014 - 9:38am by Andy Alm

EDINBORO – Hunting regulations in Pennsylvania don’t usually change very much, but the hardware that hunters use, and the way hunters hunt is changing.  Representative Greg Lucas, in the 5th Legislative District in Erie and Crawford Counties, is introducing a bill that would bring more modern technology to the table, especially in the world of Varmint hunting.

“I’m going to be introducing legislation amending the Pennsylvania Game Commission code to allow the use of semi-automatic rifles with a caliber of .223 or less and cartridge capacity of no more than 6 for hunting coyotes, foxes and woodchucks.  Semi-automatic technology has been around for a long time, and you’re allowed to use semi-automatic action for shotguns, but they have been illegal for rifles since the inception.  All semi-automatic is is a type of action that loads and unloads and fires the cartridge just by pulling the trigger.  You don’t have to pump, or use a lever-action or bolt-action.”

A lot of people have tactical rifles that operate this way, but can only use them for shooting targets the way the laws are currently written.

Lucas says taking out these varmints is a blessing to farmers with vulnerable livestock.  He is currently collecting co-sponsors on the legislation, and hopes to get a bill number on it next week.  The next step will be getting it through the House Game and Fisheries Committee.