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House Committee Postpones Vote On High-Fenced Deer Hunting

Advocates for high-fenced deer hunting preserves asked lawmakers on a House committee Monday to finally end the debate over their existence in a battle that goes back a decade.

Legislation to legalize and regulate high-fenced deer hunting preserves has failed in past sessions.

But Rep. Sean Eberhart, R-Shelbyville, the bill’s author, is more hopeful for success after a summer study committee recommended its passage.

Groups such as the Humane Society and the Hoosier Environmental Council say they’re concerned about a link between the preserves and the spread of chronic wasting disease.

But Shawn Taylor, who owns one of the preserves, says there are significant safeguards in place.

“We’re testing 100 percent of them. We’re more or less a research facility for the state of Indiana,” Taylor says.

And groups including the Indiana Deer Hunters Association are opposed, citing ethical concerns about hunting animals bred solely to be hunted in the preserves.

Jack Corpuz, speaking to lawmakers, describes himself as the average Indiana hunter.

“The idea of canned hunting is pretty much repulsive to the average hunter,” he says.

The House committee opted not to vote on the measure this week.

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