Business as usualPublished 9:16am Friday, January 27, 2012
It was business as usual at the Southampton County Board of Supervisors meeting Monday night, at least in regards to muzzleloader hunting.
My education in this matter continues. Some things you have to see for yourself; Monday night, I received an eye full.
I attempted to convince the Board of Supervisors that there is no state regulation that allows the county to deny the use of muzzleloaders in the county. After all, Southampton County is the only county in Virginia that doesn’t allow them for deer hunting.
I can now say that I have experienced some of the things that I had been told by third parties. Since third-party information is sometimes inaccurate, it was something I had to experience. It was not a pleasant experience and I learned a lot from it.
I learned that I am not going to convince anyone sitting on the board that there is no state regulation, code or statute that allows counties and cities to outlaw muzzleloaders — until the county attorney agrees.
I learned that our newly elected Board of Supervisors not only looks to the county attorney for guidance but takes what he says without question. When you are dealing with the laws and regulations, the code, of the county, that puts one man in charge and he is not an elected official. We should be concerned.
I took the advice from Supervisors Chairman Dallas Jones and have talked with County Attorney Richard Railey in regards to the state law, and the only agreement we reached is we don’t agree. I do feel that he understands my position, and that is a good thing, but he does not agree with it. He suggested seeking a majority, and I agree this is one approach worth exploring.
Directly after I was dismissed from the meeting, and the applause had died down, I was approached by multiple people. They wanted to share their advice on how we might just get the landowners back their rights.
Several good ideas were discussed. How about a petition? I couldn’t agree more. If you would like to get involved, this would be a good thing to do. How about taking Mr. Jones’ other piece of advice and contacting an attorney myself? Well, I don’t have that kind of money but, I’m being told that others are already moving in this direction.
I went to the board hoping to find the authority that gives the counties and cities the right to outlaw muzzleloaders. I was only shown what I had already researched. I believe the county attorney is biased in his viewpoint, favoring the hunt clubs, and is misinterpreting the state laws in this matter.
BOB RUDZIK is a Newsoms resident. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.