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PA Bulletin, Doc. No. 04-1719



[58 PA. CODE CH. 141]

Hunting and Trapping; Permitted Devices

[34 Pa.B. 5164]

   To effectively manage the wildlife resources of this Commonwealth, the Game Commission (Commission), at its June 29, 2004, meeting, proposed the following rulemaking to amend § 141.18 (relating to permitted devices).

   The proposed rulemaking will have no adverse impact on the wildlife resources of this Commonwealth.

   The authority for the proposed rulemaking is 34 Pa.C.S. (relating to Game and Wildlife Code) (code).

1.  Introduction

   The Commission is proposing to amend § 141.18 to make lawful the use of sound amplification devices that completely cover the ears.

2.  Purpose and Authority

   Current regulations specifically prohibit the use of sound amplification devices that completely cover the ears. With the advances in technology, many of the available electronic hearing protection devices now also amplify sound. Current regulations prohibit many of these devices because they could be used to give the hunters an unfair advantage. Many of the new hearing protection devices are electronic, enabling the hunter to hear normal conversation but preventing sounds over a certain decibel level from entering the ear. They amplify sound and completely cover the ears. By removing the relevant language in § 141.18, these hearing protection devices can be made lawful for use.

   Section 322(c)(5) of the code (relating to powers and duties of commission) specifically empowers the Commission to ''Fix the type and number of devices which may be used to take game or wildlife.'' Section 2102(b)(1) of the code (relating to regulations) authorizes the Commission to ''promulgate regulations relating to . . . the number and types of devices and equipment allowed, the identification of devices and the use and possession of devices.'' Section 2102(d) of the code authorizes the Commission to ''promulgate regulations stipulating . . . devices which may be used, the manner in which and the location where the devices may be used, the species the devices may be used for and the season when the devices may be used.'' Section 2102(a) of the code provides that ''The commission shall promulgate such regulations as it deems necessary and appropriate concerning game or wildlife and hunting or furtaking in this Commonwealth, including regulations relating to . . . the ways, manner, methods and means of hunting or furtaking, and the health and safety of persons who hunt or take wildlife or may be in the vicinity of persons who hunt or take game or wildlife in this Commonwealth.'' The amendment to § 141.18 was proposed under this authority.

3.  Regulatory Requirements

   The proposed rulemaking will make lawful the use of sound amplification devices that completely cover the ears.

4.  Persons Affected

   Persons who wish to use sound amplification devices that completely cover the ears will be affected by the proposed rulemaking.

5.  Cost and Paperwork Requirements

   The proposed rulemaking should not result in additional cost or paperwork.

6.  Effective Date

   The proposed rulemaking will be effective on final-form publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and will remain in effect until changed by the Commission.


   Comments can be sent to the Director, Information and Education, Game Commission, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797 until September 27, 2004.

8.  Contact Person

   For further information regarding the proposed rulemaking, contact Michael A. Dubaich, Director, Bureau of Law Enforcement, 2001 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797, (717) 783-6526.

Executive Director

   Fiscal Note: 48-192. No fiscal impact; (8) recommends adoption.

Annex A




Subchapter A. GENERAL

§ 141.18. Permitted devices.

   The following devices may be used to hunt or take wildlife:

*      *      *      *      *

   (2)  Electronic sound amplification devices that are incorporated into hearing protection devices and completely contained in [and] or on the hunter's ear. [This does not include any device or devices that completely cover the ear or ears.]

[Pa.B. Doc. No. 04-1719. Filed for public inspection September 17, 2004, 9:00 a.m.]

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