COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Hunters could use silencers on their guns while hunting certain game under a proposal that passed the Ohio House on Wednesday.
The bill would let licensed Ohio hunters use the noise suppressors while hunting certain birds and other wild game, including squirrels, rabbits and white-tailed deer. Only those authorized under state and federal laws could use the devices, which must be properly registered.
The bill's sponsor, state Rep. Cheryl Grossman, said the suppressors would help protect hunters' hearing, while making field commands easier to hear because hunters would not have to shout. The Grove City Republican also said the devices would reduce early morning disruptions to neighbors.
"Think of your car muffler," Grossman told her colleagues on the House floor. "It's very similar."
No representative spoke against the bill, though opponents have said quieter weapons are less safe and easier to use illegally. The bill passed on a 73-14 vote.
Grossman said to obtain a silencer, hunters must complete an application and undergo a background check.
A House committee approved the bill last month with bipartisan support after lawmakers and their aides examined the devices and listened to silenced and unsilenced weapons.
The measure now goes to the Senate for consideration.