INDIANAPOLIS - A legislative committee is backing an attempt to legalize existing game preserves around Indiana where hunters pay for a chance to shoot deer confined inside high fences.
The House Natural Resources Committee voted 6-2 Monday in favor of the proposal intended to allow five existing hunting preserves to stay in business while not allowing any new ones to open.
Rep. Matt Ubelhor of Bloomfield says the legislation is needed to resolve a lawsuit dating to 2005 over the state Department of Natural Resources' attempts to close the preserves.
Several environmental and outdoorsmen organizations argue that the farm-raised deer could increase the disease risk for Indiana's wild deer.
Rep. Tom Saunders of Lewisville says he voted against the bill because he doesn't consider hunting in the fenced preserves a sport.