Many of Vermont’s laws haven’t been updated in generations, and yet ever-evolving practices and emerging technologies have drastically changed the landscape of what we all enjoy as personal rights and what we know as our social contract as a community.
Here you will find some bills* heading to the Vermont State legislature this year (2022) that we believe improve the environment both naturally and socially in Vermont, and we urge you to speak out with us in advocacy of these new laws. We have a duty to the wildlife and each other to be vigilant in our improvement of both.
(*It is vital to the potential passage of these bills that we bring them to the floor with the passionate support of the sponsoring lawmakers, and not “by request,” which is a thinly veiled tactic that the legislature uses to label a bill they are only bringing for a vote to placate an outspoken constituent. Bills brought “by request” neither receive a vote nor any meaningful attention. These new laws are essential for the functioning and health of Vermont’s wild landscapes and to improve the ethics of our human rules that govern our place within the ecosystem.)
Firstly, the bill (Formerly H400 in the House) S112 are changes to act 250 that significantly improve the ability for small farms and farmsteads to function and diversify the income of a farm with less bureaucratic red tape and expense.
Click on the banner at the top of this page to read and track that bill.
Bills S.201, S.281, S.129, and S.172 significantly improve Vermont’s renowned ethical hunting culture as well as improve protections for wildlife in common sense ways for the 21st century and its demographics and emerging technologies. Please read more about these new laws here
S.201, BAN ON LEGHOLD TRAPS
S.281, BAN ON COYOTE HOUNDING
S.129, MAKE VT FISH & WILDLIFE BOARD ADVISORY ONLY AND OFFER MORE INCLUSION
Read this article by Lark Shields and access the full text of H.411
Update: on 05/11/2022 Bill H.411 was signed into law by Vermont Governor Phil Scott.
“Drumroll please … 🥁
Bill H.411, the ban on wanton waste, was signed into law today! This effort took Vermont wildlife advocates nearly four years to accomplish, but we never gave up. Each email you sent and every phone call you made, helped to pass this very important law. We know we oftentimes send a lot of action alerts, but we promise you, there's a method to the madness! Thank you for sticking it out with us. Together, we are making a Vermont a better place for wildlife.
This law will be one of the most comprehensive bans in the country, offering protections to not only “big game species,” but to foxes, crows and other wildlife that are hunted or trapped. No more killing wildlife for target practice and leaving their lifeless bodies to rot where they died. We also think that over time, this law will change the culture of killing for the sake of killing. If someone is required to use the animal that they hunt or trap, they may think twice about why they’re killing. Make no mistake, we still oppose trapping and make no concessions for leghold traps. However, as long as the activity is legal, we must have the proper laws in place to prevent wasteful killing.
Our next step is to ensure that Fish & Wildlife includes this information in their hunter/trapper education material and that the law is actually enforced. We will need you to be the eyes and ears! If you suspect a wanton waste violation, contact us. We can keep your name confidential.
We will be hosting a legislative wrap-up at the end of the month to provide an update on all of the wildlife bills so stay tuned.
From the Protect Our Wildlife Board of Directors, THANK YOU!
Brenna, Holly, Pat, John, Jennifer, Kristen & Lisa”
Joint Protect Our Wildlife VT to be a part of a community of betterment and change for Vermont’s wild animals and deep woods loving humans: www.protectourwildlifevt.org
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