Lawmakers revive bill to allow importing elk for hunting

Photo by Lindsey Lerner

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island lawmakers have reintroduced a bill to allow elk hunting on shooting preserves.

The Providence Journal reports the bill introduced by last year’s sponsor, Democratic state Rep. Stephen Ucci, would allow shooting preserves that are 500 acres or more in size to import deer, elk or other animals for hunting.

The Department of Environmental Management expressed concerns about last year’s version of the bill, saying it could potentially introduce chronic wasting disease to deer populations in the state.

This year’s bill would require a veterinarian to inspect every animal imported to ensure it would not damage the state’s ecology.

A spokeswoman for the DEM says the agency is still reviewing the bill.

Ucci has not responded to a request for comment.