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State to reduce penalties for hunters who fail to report deer harvest

Michigan DNR
Michigan DNR

Michigan hunters are set to face less harsh penalties if they fail to report a deer harvest.

The Department of Natural Resources instituted a policy last year that requires hunters to report successful deer harvests within 72 hours. Those who skirted the rule could have faced a fee of up to 500 dollars as well as a potential misdemeanor charge and jail time.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed a bill last week that eliminates the misdemeanor language and caps fees at no more than 150 dollars.

Chad Stewart is with the DNR. He says the department will continue to engage with hunters rather than emphasize the penalties.

 Stewart said, “We really focused on education rather than enforcement over that first year, and actually we’ll continue to do so this year just because it’s such a new system for everybody to get used to”

Those who hunt deer can fill out a harvest report on the DNR’s website or through a mobile app.

Arjun Thakkar is WKAR's politics and civics reporter.