Governor Cuomo has submitted his “2014-15 New York State Executive Budget” to the New York State Legislature. As part of his proposed budget bill, Governor Cuomo wants to license crossbows for hunting. 

Crossbows are short-range lethal weapons from which the projectile is released by squeezing a trigger, rather than by manually releasing the string as with a longbow.  They are in effect guns that shoot powerful arrows.

Hunting with a crossbow is currently illegal in New York. Under this proposed law, children as young as twelve years old could be licensed to hunt deer and bears with crossbows. Inexperienced hunters are not able to effectively track and kill wounded animals. Among longbow hunters, the crippling rate is 50% (animals hit but never recovered); with inexperienced children participating in crossbow hunting that crippling rate is certain to increase sharply.

Of further concern is that inexperienced hunters are much more likely to cause injuries to other hunters, hikers, boaters, farmers, residents, companion animals, and children in the area. Increased accessibility of these weapons through stores such as Wal-Mart could result in their use in crimes, especially as they are silent.

In Ohio, where hunting with crossbows is now legal, a father shot his 14 year old son in the chest killing him.

The bill further lowers the current 500 foot distance from a home or occupied structure to 150 feet. Reducing the range to 150 feet will most certainly increase human fatalities and injuries attributable to hunting accidents.

Animals who are wounded, but not immediately killed, by arrows may suffer for a long time before they finally die from their injuries.

If you want to oppose this irresponsible, dangerous and cruel proposal, please contact  the following:

1. Your own state senator; If you don’t know who that is, call the Board of Elections. In OnondagaCounty, the number is (315) 435-8683.
2. Your own member of the Assembly (ditto re Board of Elections)
3. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (518) 455-3791 or
4. and 5. Senate Leader Dean Skelos (518) 455-3171 or and Senate Leader Jeffrey Klein (518)455-3595 or
6. Gov. Andrew Cuomo; His Syracuse office is (315) 428-4337 or

You can learn more about this from League of Humane Voters at lohv-

You can also contact People for Animal Rights, P.O. Box 15358, Syracuse13215-0358, or

This article was written by Linda A. DeStefano (with thanks to League of Humane Voters) and translated in Spanish by Rob English.

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