The bill that aimed to ban bowfishing for redfish was pulled today (April 21) by Sen. Dan Claitor, who said one of the main reasons was unfavorable public input. The proposal was to be considered tomorrow (April 22) by the Senate Natural Resources Committee.

"In my mind, we've given this thing a pretty good public hearing already, and there was nothing to be gained by continuing with the bill when the result is predetermined," Claitor said.

Claitor had sponsored Senate Bill 573 at the behest of CCA-Louisiana and former Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Secretary Jimmy Jenkins.

The Baton Rouge Republican said it became apparent that the votes were not there from other senators to pass the bill, and third consideration.

"The science isn't there (to justify a ban)," Claitor said.

Claitor said that he reserved the right to reintroduce a bill in the future if scientific data showed bowfishing could harm redfish stocks.

"If the science would show that there's a problem (with bowfishing redfish), from what I've heard, the bowfishermen would be for the bill," he said. "If the science merits (a ban), I think everybody would be for it."

The fact that Claitor stepped back from the bill proves that the legislative process works best when the public is vocal, the senator said.

"When people are involved, we get results that are good," Claitor said.