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Long Island Lawsuit Tests Local Bow Hunting Limitations

Image by Zeljko Vranjevac from Pixabay

The New York state Court of Appeals said it will hear the town of Smithtown’s request to overturn a lower court ruling that struck down a local law to eliminate bow hunting in most of the Long Island town.

A deer hunting group sued the town for its ordinance that banned guns and bows from being used within 500 feet of occupied buildings, parks and beaches. That’s more restrictive than a state law that allows bows to be used after 150 feet.

In August, a mid-level court ruled that the state law preempted the town law. Now the state’s highest court will decide by 2022 whether local governments have the authority to restrict bow hunting.

A native Long Islander, J.D. is WSHU's managing editor. He also hosts the climate podcast Higher Ground. J.D. reports for public radio stations across the Northeast, is a journalism educator and proud SPJ member.