We have a cheer for the news that a proposed bill to instate a big -game hunting raffle in Colorado was struck down due to lack of interest and has been tabled until next year. State Sen. Ray Scott, R-Grand Junction, proposed the bill with the hopes of creating a raffle that would offer licenses to hunters to kill an array of Big Game species in the state including moose, black bears, mountain lions, elk, deer, bighorn sheep, goat, and antelope.
The proposal was completely out of touch with reality, considering how the numbers of hunters in the state overall have declined 6 percent between 2003 and 2017. In fact, according the 2011 census, Colorado residents that participate in wildlife-watching outnumber those that participate in hunting by more than 9:1. Hunters represent a small minority of Colorado’s population – just 4.6 percent.
Many activists, including Friends of Animals, showed up Tuesday to testify against the bill in front of the Senate Finance Committee.
Jennifer Best, FoA’s Wildlife Law Program assistant director told the committee, “It was initially said that this would help habitat, but there’s nothing in the bill that requires any of the proceeds even goes to habitat. The nonhunters in Colorado deserve a seat at the table to discuss how to manage Colorado wildlife and not, as the bill does here, set up a committee of hunters to give money to more organizations to recruit more hunters.”
Read more about the bill in this article, “Colorado bill to raffle licenses to hunt 10 mammals punted to next year“.