Pa. moves to shield landowners from hunters’ infractions

    Pennsylvania landowners would not be held responsible for hunting violations that happen on their property if a state Senate-approved bill becomes law.

    The Pennsylvania Farm Bureau says private landowners who let hunters on their property for free shouldn’t be held responsible if the rules are broken — if an animal is killed in the off season, for example.

    Dan Wilkinson, president of the Adams County Farm Bureau, said Friday he’s actually not sure how big a problem hunting violations have been for farmers,

    “I haven’t actually heard of anything, not that I know of, and we haven’t had a problem with it,” said Wilkinson, a crop and dairy farmer.

    But even the possibility that a farmer could be dragged to court for someone else breaking the rules makes Wilkinson uneasy.

    “The hunter is the one that is supposed to know the regulations and know what game they’re hunting and know where the safety zones are, that they’re not too close to roads or too close to buildings,” he said.

    Landowners could still be charged for hunting violations if they receive money from the hunter involved for land access.

    The bill now heads to the House.

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