DNR officials will present administrative rule change proposals at a joint meeting of the Indiana Advisory Council for Water and Resource Regulation and the Advisory Council for Lands and Cultural Resources on Dec. 16., 2003.
The proposed rules are the product of input from hundreds of people and intense review by DNR fisheries and wildlife managers and law enforcement officers over the past 12 months.
The DNR is proposing more than 30 rule changes to protect wildlife while addressing enforcement, legal and social concerns. Changes to deer and turkey hunting laws, fishing regulations, turtle regulations and state endangered species listings are being considered. The creation of a fall turkey season, extending the coyote season, and establishing new brown trout regulations at Brookville tailwater are a few of the rule proposals that hunters and anglers proposed.
A proposal to prohibit use of smokeless powder for deer hunting considered early in the rule review process has been dropped from the package.
"We received a lot of opposition to the elimination of smokeless powder, so we dropped the proposal," said Glen Salmon, DNR Fish and Wildlife director.
"That's what this review process is about. We want to hear what people think of the changes we suggest."
The advisory council meeting takes place Dec. 16, 10 a.m. at Ft. Harrison State Park office on the Indianapolis eastside. The meeting is open to the public.
The rule change package will be presented to the Natural Resources Commission on Jan. 20, 2004 and a public hearing will be scheduled for spring next year.
"More than 800 people have contributed ideas so far. It's great to see so many conservationists getting involved," said Salmon.
For information on the rule review process timeline and specific proposals, go to:http://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/about/rules.htm
Individuals who need reasonable modifications for effective participation in public meetings should call the DNR Division of Fish and Wildlife ADA Coordinator at (317) 232-4080 (voice and TDD).