August 17, 2011
Iowa Lawmakers Reverse Lead-Shot Ban for Dove Season
By Chad Love
The ongoing soap opera known as "Days of Our Iowa Dove Season" continues. In last month's episode, the Iowa wildlife commission approved the dove season, but banned the use of lead shot. Now, Iowa lawmakers are blocking the wildlife commission's decision.
From this story in the Des Moines Register:
A panel of Iowa lawmakers this morning blocked a state commission’s proposal to force dove hunters to use nontoxic shot when the 70-day season starts Sept. 1. Members of the governor-appointed Iowa Natural Resource Commission said lead shot poisons eagles and other wildlife and should be avoided. The commission earlier this year voted to include the ban in rules setting the state’s new dove-hunting season even though lawmakers defeated an amendment meant to do the same thing last session. That angered legislators, who said the commission overstepped its bounds. Members of the Iowa Administrative Rules Review Committee voted to let lawmakers decide the issue next session.
The Legislature approved a dove-hunting season last session after decades of testy debate. Some hunters told the rules panel that steel shot would be less effective and far more expensive. Others said the nontoxic shot doesn’t cost that much more, and preventing lead poisoning among animals is worth the price. The season will go on as planned, but lead shot will be allowed. If lawmakers don’t act on the issue, the lead-shot ban would go into effect when the Legislature adjourns.
Stay tuned for next week's episode, when the Iowa Natural Resource Commission finds out that it's the secret lovechild of the DMV, while its evil stepbrother, the state tourism department, schemes to grab all new budget allocations for FY 2012. Meanwhile, come Sept. 1 you Iowans can once again punch futile holes in the sky with lead, for now...