As the Illinois Senate approaches its summer recess on June 1, it has not taken a vote on Rep. Jerry Costello’s House Bill 3623, which allows a hunter to purchase an apprentice hunting license for multiple years. This bi-partisan bill was unanimously recommended on May 2 by the Senate Agriculture Committee and passed the House by a unanimous 94-0 vote on March 29.
Take Action Today! Illinois members should contact their senator and ask them to vote YES on House Bill 3623. Calls are needed to encourage the Illinois Senate to act on this important bill that will help in the recruitment of new hunters. Members can contact their senator by using the Sportsmen’s Alliance Legislative Action Center.
Illinois has consistently worked to improve its apprentice hunting law since the original law was passed in 2006. After bills in 2010 and 2014 removed unnecessary barriers, the only remaining restriction on apprentice hunting in Illinois is a one-year participation limit for adults. HB 3623 removes this restriction and puts Illinois on par with its neighboring states of Indiana and Wisconsin.
Support for HB 3623 and other Families Afield legislation across the country is led by the Sportsmen’s Alliance, National Shooting Sports Foundation, National Wild Turkey Federation, National Rifle Association and the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation. This bill is supported locally by the Illinois Federation for Outdoor Resources.
“Research shows that we have a lot better chance to convert an apprentice to a regularly licensed hunter if they have multiple opportunities,” said Luke Houghton, associate director of state services for Sportsmen’s Alliance. “Illinois law already allows this for youth hunters, and HB 3623 would provide this same safe opportunity for everyone else.”
About the Sportsmen’s Alliance: The Sportsmen’s Alliance protects and defends America’s wildlife conservation programs and the pursuits – hunting, fishing and trapping – that generate the money to pay for them. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation is responsible for public education, legal defense and research. Its mission is accomplished through several distinct programs coordinated to provide the most complete defense capability possible. Stay connected to Sportsmen’s Alliance: Online, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.