Cutler Game Commission Officer Legislation Approved by House
6/1/2009
Under legislation authored by Rep. Bryan Cutler (R-Peach Bottom) and unanimously passed by the House today, game commission officers will now be statutorily required under the Game Code to only stop hunters with reasonable suspicion or search with probable cause.
 
“I am pleased the House has passed this legislation, which was supported by the Pennsylvania Game Commission, National Rifle Association and other major sportsmen’s groups in the Commonwealth,” said Cutler. “We need consistency between how game commission officers and other law enforcement officers are permitted to stop and search individuals.”
 
House Bill 181 would amend the powers and duties of wildlife conservation officers to specify that vehicles could only be stopped under reasonable suspicion or under the administrative procedures for road check points. It would also limit searches to cases where there is probable cause, consent, exigent circumstances or other exceptions to warrant requirements established by legal precedent, bringing the Game and Wildlife Code in line with current case law.
 
Cutler noted that game commission officers are already expected to act under these guidelines, but some sportsmen have complained that the game code is somewhat vague when it comes to stops and searches. His legislation will clarify and codify the issue.
 
“Hunters deserve the same rights and protections that every Pennsylvania and United States citizen is afforded,” said Cutler. “Just as illegal searches and seizures are clearly prohibited in our communities, they should also be clearly prohibited on our game lands by our Game Code. ”
 
House Bill 181 will now go to the Senate for its consideration.
 
Rep. Bryan Cutler
100th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
 (717) 786-4551
(717) 783-6424
Contact: Nicole Wamsley
(717) 783-8063
Member Site: RepCutler.com
Caucus Site: PAHouseGOP.com