Today, July 1, the following pro-gun/pro-hunting laws will take effect in Virginia:
Sunday hunting legislation — Senate Bill 154, sponsored by now-former state Senator Phil Puckett (D-38), and House Bill 1237, sponsored by Delegate Todd Gilbert (R-15) and 39 colleagues — repeals the outdated ban on Sunday hunting on private lands with written permission from the owner while still prohibiting hunting within 200 yards of a house of worship, the hunting of deer with dogs and the hunting of bear. SB 154 was signed into law on April 1 and HB 1237 was signed into law on March 5.
Senate Bill 371, sponsored by Senator Jeffrey McWaters (R-8), allows the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries to issue hunting, trapping and fishing licenses valid for one full year from a future effective date. SB 371 was signed into law on March 17.
House Bill 127, sponsored by Delegate Ed Scott (R-30), allows persons to hunt big game with muzzleloading pistols of a caliber of .45 or greater where and in those seasons when the use of muzzleloading rifles is permitted. HB 127 was signed into law on March 5.
House Bill 307, sponsored by Delegate Scott Lingamfelter (R-31), permits local school boards to provide after-school hunter safety education programs for students grades seven through twelve, at the cost of the participant. HB 307 was signed into law on April 4.
House Bill 357, sponsored by Delegate Rich Anderson (R-51), allows a circuit court clerk to disclose information contained in a concealed handgun permit application to the applicant. HB 357 was signed into law on March 31.
House Bill 715, sponsored by Delegate Tommy Wright (R-61), establishes a new combined license for persons hunting with a bow and arrow or a crossbow. HB 715 was signed into law on March 5.
House Bill 752, sponsored by Delegate Tom Rust (R-86), gives a school board discretion in requiring expulsion for certain students found with a firearm on school premises. HB 752 was signed into law on April 7.
House Bill 1146, sponsored by Delegate Buddy Fowler (R-55), allows apprentice hunters to hunt unsupervised if they have completed a hunter education course. HB 1146 was signed into law on March 17.
Your NRA-ILA thanks you for your active involvement during the 2014 legislative session, which helped ensure these measures became law. As always, please stay tuned to www.nraila.org for future updates.