Report Title:

Cruelty to Game Animals

Description:

Prohibits DLNR and any person from using poisons, snares, or traps that are unattended or designed to injure, capture, or kill game animals. Makes the use of such devices and methods a misdemeanor offense under the Penal Code.

THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

2862

TWENTY-FIRST LEGISLATURE, 2002

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 


 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

RELATING TO CRUELTY TO ANIMALS.

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

SECTION 1. State agencies and private individuals and groups sometimes use snares, poisons, and unattended traps to control game animal populations, especially when those populations are known to interfere, or suspected of interfering, with endangered species management. Death of the trapped or poisoned animal from shock, dehydration, starvation, or infection is often slow and painful. The legislature finds that the use of those modalities to control game animal populations is exceptionally cruel.

Moreover, because those control methods are not specific management tools, animal species other than those intended may also be maimed or killed. The legislature finds that more humane and effective population control alternatives exist, but are not presently being fully utilized. The legislature finds and declares that the inhumane treatment of one animal species for the sake of protecting another animal species is unconscionable.

Accordingly, the purpose of this Act is to:

(1) Prohibit the department of land and natural resources or any person from using snares, poisons, or traps that are unattended or designed to injure, for the purpose of trapping or killing game animals; and

(2) Make the use of those types of devices or methods a misdemeanor offense under the penal code.

SECTION 2. Chapter 711, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"711- Cruelty to game animals. (1) Any person who uses poison, snares, unattended traps, or traps that are primarily designed to injure, for the purpose of capturing or killing game animals, commits the offense of cruelty to game animals.

(2) As used in this section, unless the context otherwise requires, "game animals" means animals designated by law or by rule for hunting or subsistence.

(3) Cruelty to game animals is a misdemeanor."

SECTION 3. Section 183D-65, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (a) to read as follows:

"(a) On any game management area, public hunting area, or forest reserve or other lands under the jurisdiction of the department, predators deemed harmful to wildlife by the department may be destroyed by any means deemed necessary by the department[.]; provided that the department shall not use poison, snares, unattended traps, or traps that are primarily designed to injure, for the purpose of capturing or killing game animals or for capturing or killing animals for subsistence."

SECTION 4. Section 195D-5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"195D-5 Conservation programs. (a) The department shall conduct research on indigenous aquatic life, wildlife, and land plants, and on endangered species and their associated ecosystems, and shall utilize the land acquisition and other authority vested in the department to carry out programs for the conservation, management, and protection of such species and their associated ecosystems. In addition, the department [is hereby authorized to] may acquire, by purchase, donation or otherwise, lands or interests therein needed to carry out the programs relating to the intent and purpose of this chapter.

(b) The office of the governor shall review other programs administered by the department and, to the extent practicable, utilize such programs in furtherance of the purposes of this chapter. The governor or the governor's authorized representative shall also encourage all federal agencies to utilize their authority in furtherance of the purposes of this chapter. All other state agencies shall use their authority in furtherance of the purposes of this chapter by:

(1) Carrying out programs for the protection of threatened and endangered species; and

(2) Taking such action as may be necessary to ensure that actions authorized, funded, or carried out by them do not jeopardize the continued existence of threatened or endangered species.

In carrying out programs authorized by this chapter, the department may enter into agreements with federal agencies, counties, private landowners, and organizations for the administration and management of any area or facility established under section 195D-21 or 195D-22, or public lands utilized for conserving, managing, enhancing, or protecting indigenous aquatic life, wildlife, land plants, threatened and endangered species, and their [habitat.] habitats.

(c) In carrying out programs authorized by this section, the department may enter into agreements with federal agencies and with the counties for administration and management of any area established under this section, or utilized for conserving, managing, enhancing, or protecting indigenous aquatic life, wildlife, land plants, and endangered species.

(d) In carrying out programs authorized by this section, priority shall be given to the conservation and protection of those endangered aquatic life, wildlife, and land plant species and their associated ecosystems, whose extinction within the State would imperil or terminate, respectively, their existence in the world.

(e) The department shall coordinate with the natural area reserves commission and the animal species advisory commission all research, investigations, lists of indigenous and endangered aquatic life, wildlife, and land plants, and programs for the conservation, management, enhancement, and protection of species that are authorized by this chapter.

(f) The department may permit, under terms and conditions adopted by rule, the taking, possession, transportation, or exportation of any indigenous aquatic life, wildlife, or land plant on the endangered species list for scientific purposes and for propagation of such species in captivity for preservation purposes.

(g) In carrying out programs authorized under this section, the department shall not use poison, snares, unattended traps, or traps that are primarily designed to injure, for the purpose of capturing or killing game animals or for capturing or killing animals for subsistence."

SECTION 5. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun, before its effective date.

SECTION 6. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 7. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

INTRODUCED BY:

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