House Resources Advances Legislation to Allow Municipalities to Regulate Trapping
HB 201 Seeks to Prevent Injuries to People and Pets if Authorized by Municipal Officials
Juneau – Legislation advanced out of the House Resources Committee today to allow municipalities in Alaska to establish their own rules to control trapping. House Bill 201, sponsored by Representative Andy Josephson (D-Anchorage), limits municipal regulations to the limited purpose of preventing injuries to people and domestic animals.
“My goal with this bill is to prevent conflicts between users of Alaska’s tremendous wildlife resources and users of our state’s amazing natural beauty,” said Rep. Josephson. “Rather than impose regulations from the top down, this bill allows the cities and boroughs to determine if regulations are appropriate.”
HB 201 specifically allows municipalities to exempt trappers from any trapping ordinances and it prohibits municipalities from eliminating reasonable opportunities for subsistence trapping activities. HB 201 allows municipalities to restrict the types of traps that can be used and to require signs or other notification requirements for the placement of traps.
Currently, around 15 cities and boroughs regulate trapping despite legal opinions that they don’t have the right to do so under state law or the Alaska Constitution. HB 201 would remove legal uncertainty by specifically sanctioning their ability to regulate trapping.
“City council and borough assembly members know their community better than anyone here in Juneau, so they are in the best position to determine if people and pets are at harm and how to respond if needed,” said Rep. Josephson.
House Bill 201 advanced out of the House Resources Committee today and has been sent to the House Rules Committee to be scheduled for a floor vote.
For more information, contact Megan Rowe in Rep. Josephson’s office at (907) 465-4939.