This morning, the New Hampshire Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee unanimously passed Rep. John Burt’s (R-Hillsborough) HB 500 out of committee, recommending its passage by the Senate on a 4-0 vote. This marks the first time that suppressor hunting legislation has made it this far in New Hampshire, and the ASA is very excited that this bill is finally headed to a vote on the Senate floor. A floor vote could happen as early as next week.
The ASA is very appreciative of the support Sig Sauer and Ruger, two firearm and suppressor manufacturers with large footprints in New Hampshire, provided to get this bill pushed forward. Sig Sauer’s Suppressor Product Manager testified in support of HB 500, along with ASA’s General Counsel and Reps. Spillane (R-Rockingham) and Duarte (R-Rockingham). Sig Sauer’s state lobbyist was also on hand to help get HB 500 through committee. We are also appreciative of all the help that Brent Miller and Rep. Jeff Goley (D-Hillsborough) of the New Hampshire Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus have provided in getting this bill where it is today.
While this vote represents a major step forward for suppressor hunting legalization in NH, we still need your help. Please reach out to your New Hampshire Senators and politely urge them to support HB 500 when it gets to the Senate floor. Several members of the Committee noted that the overwhelming public support they’ve received in favor of HB 500 helped lead them to vote in favor of its passage. You can use this link to find contact information for your Senator. With your support, we hope to get this bill on Gov. Hassan’s desk within the month!
There are many benefits to using a suppressor, including:
- HEARING PROTECTION: Noise induced hearing loss and tinnitus are two of the most common afflictions for recreational shooters and hunters. Everyone knows that gunfire is loud, but very few people understand the repercussions that shooting can have on their hearing until it’s too late. Suppressors reduce the noise of a gunshot by an average of 20 – 35 dB, which is roughly the same as earplugs or earmuffs. By decreasing the overall sound signature, suppressors help to preserve the hearing of recreational shooters, hunters, and hunting dogs around the world.
- SAFER HUNTING: Most hunters do not wear hearing protection in the field because they want to hear their surroundings. The trouble is, exposure to even a single unsuppressed gunshot can, and often does, lead to permanent hearing damage. Suppressors allow hunters to maintain full situational awareness, while still protecting their hearing. The result is a safer hunting experience for the hunter, and for those nearby.
- NOISE COMPLAINTS: As urban developments advance into rural areas, shooting ranges and hunting preserves across the country are being closed due to noise complaints. Although it can still be heard, suppressed gunfire helps mitigate noise complaints from those who live near shooting ranges and hunting land.
- ACCURACY: Suppressors reduce recoil, and help decrease muzzle flinch. These benefits lead to improved accuracy, better shot placement, and more humane hunts.