Missouri Bills Would Make Elk MDC Property
Elk will most likely be reintroduced to Missouri this year based on a plan passed by the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC). However not everybody is happy about the return of elk to the Show Me State. Local lawmakers, upset about potential vehicle and livestock damage caused by the elk are introducing state bills that would make the elk MDC property and therefore liable for any damage caused.
The Kansas City Star has an article running on this unusual move that may indirectly block the reintroduction.
"Although we cannot as a Legislature do anything to stop this dangerous act by the commission, we can pass legislation that will begin to make restitution to Missourians to pay them for damages caused by their decision," said Schad, R-Versailles. His bill was approved by a House committee this past week. Conservation officials said that in North America, wildlife is not considered to be owned by anyone and can be enjoyed by all. They said the legislation would establish a dangerous precedent for the ownership of other wild animals such as deer, turkey and squirrels.