SECTION 1. There shall be established a legislative commission for the purpose of evaluating and recommending non-lethal and lethal methods which shall be available to wildlife managers and the public, to successfully manage and co-exist with the following animals: beaver, muskrat, coyote and moose.
Said commission shall consist 13 members; two (2) of whom shall be the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on natural resources and agriculture, who shall act as chairs; two (2) additional members of the state senate appointed by the president; and two (2)additional members of the house of representatives appointed by the speaker. The seven (7) remaining members shall consist of: the director of the division of wildlife, or his designee; the commissioner of highways or his designee; the commissioner of the department of conservation and recreation, or his designee, a member of the Massachusetts society for the protection against cruelty to animals; a member of the Massachusetts association of boards of health; a member of the Massachusetts sportsmen’s council; and, a biologist specializing in the species of coyote, beaver, moose and muskrat, to be chosen by the chairs.
The commission may make use of the expertise of additional state and local officials and wildlife experts as it deems necessary to fulfill its mission. The commission shall examine and evaluate the effectiveness of lethal and non-lethal techniques, including but not limited to the following: flow devices; repellents; improved signage; highway and yard fencing; public education; improved highway lighting; aversive conditioning, “critter proofing” techniques for homes, yards, and neighborhoods; trapping, and hunting.
In addition, the commission shall consider the impacts of amending existing state policy regarding the placement of signs to prohibit hunting on private property, and whether signs should instead be placed in order to authorize such activity.
The commission shall report to the general court the results of its investigation and study, and its recommendations, if any, for such legislation necessary to carry out its recommendations. The commission shall file its report with the clerks of the state senate and house of representatives, and with the joint committee on natural resources and agriculture within six months from the effective date of this act.
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