This week, the Ohio Senate will take up House Bill 490. Supporters of deer sanctuaries in Ohio, known as Saving Trooper from here in Knox County, were able to persuade the Ohio House to add language to this bill establishing licensed, regulated, and privately funded deer sanctuaries. Unfortunately, the same state agencies that attempted to criminalize the efforts of the late Carol Deyo to save crippled deer Trooper and Patch and her raccoons are now trying to remove this amendment from the bill.
The government agencies objections are wholly without merit. Ohioans will not utilize this legislation to make deer pets. Rather, it establishes a process for the establishment, licensing, regulation, and inspection of deer sanctuaries, by highly trained individuals and groups. The deer that are taken in are those that are too ill or too injured to ever be returned to the wild.
Under current law, Ohioans that come upon a wounded deer have a handful of bad choices, kill the deer themselves, contact the Division of Wildlife who will kill the deer, or attempt to nurse the deer back to health themselves and face criminal prosecution like the late Carol Deyo did. This amendment provides a common sense resolution to this problem. Please join me in contacting the members of the Senate Agriculture Committee at
http://www.ohiosenate.gov/committee/agriculture and ask them to keep this common sense amendment in the bill.
Scott Allan Pullins