Should Maine’s Forest Rangers be Armed? [POLL]
A bill that would allow Maine’s forest rangers to carry firearms has been getting a lot of attention as of late, and is pushing forward in Maine's Legislature.
Forest rangers say firearms would allow them to protect themselves from the ever-growing dangers they face in the field. Critics of the bill say rangers carrying weapons is inappropriate and unnecessary.
Republican Representative Larry Dunphy’s bill won initial approval in the House earlier this month, and on Tuesday was passed by the Senate.
The Senate did reject a proposed amendment that would have created nine new conservation officers, who could carry firearms and enforce criminal laws and would restrict forest ranger enforcement to only civil violations.
Rangers would have to take classes and training to be armed, coming at an estimated cost of nearly $87,000.
The measure faces final votes in the House and Senate.