HB 4283: Bill Allowing Certain Rifles in Shotgun Zone

Summary: HB 4283 would allow a number of certain cartridges to be used in rifles in Michigan’s southern limited firearms area, more commonly called the “shotgun zone” during the firearm deer season. The measure seeks to bring Michigan in line with surrounding states like Indiana, and could potentially get more women and youth participating in firearm season in the shotgun zone.

Current Status: Passed in House. Public testimony heard on October 3, 2013 in the Senate Outdoor Recreation and Tourism Committee, where a minor technical amendment was adopted. The Senate Committee reported the bill out on November 12, 2013 to the full Senate where it still awaits action.

Call your State Senator and ask that they vote Yes on HB 4283!

Analysis: Under Michigan’s current law, only shotguns, muzzle loaders, and certain pistols can be used during firearm deer season in the shotgun zone. However, according to the ammunition manufacturers’ specifications, the rifles and ammunition proposed to be added to the shotgun zone have less power, some 40-50% less, and also have less muzzle and 100 yard velocity than the shotguns and in-line muzzle loaders presently allowed in the zone.

Currently, the following firearms are allowed during firearm deer season in the southern “shotgun zone”:

— A shotgun with a smooth or rifled barrel.
— A .35 caliber or larger pistol capable of holding no more than nine shells at one time in the barrel and magazine combined and loaded with straight-walled cartridges.
— A muzzle-loading rifle or black-powder pistol loaded with black-powder or a commercially manufactured black-powder substitute.

The bill also would expand the allowed firearms to include a .35 caliber or larger rifle loaded with straight-walled cartridges with a minimum case length of 1.16 inches and a maximum case length of 1.80 inches.

MUCC Action: MUCC supports this bill.

Sponsor: Rep. Matt Lori (R-Constantine)

MUCC Policy Resolution: AC020610: MICHIGAN FIREARM DEER SEASON – SHOTGUN ZONE. A resolution requesting that MUCC urge the NRC to change the law regulating the Shotgun zone to allow use of Rifles using straight walled pistol cartridges

  • Bill

    wow, Great news. We have younger family members who would benefit due to the reduced recoil, and my wife would change to a 44mag right now. She is shopping for her options as I type.
    Good work MUCC, we have read that you have been instrumental in pushing for this common sense change.

  • RaginVocation

    I think this is a great idea that is long overdue. I’d love to see MUCC list what chamberings this would apply to.

  • Jim M

    The bill should include cartridges such as the 45-70 which isn’t as powerful as some muzzleloader options

  • peckontheweb

    This would be great for Michigan’s hunters and economy. Looking forward to seeing it pass. Thanks MUCC.

  • Harry Ellison

    Heard of this coming down the pipeline a while back #thumbs up for the #Bill Allowing Certain Rifles in a Shotgun Zone. #Less regulation always a bonus!

  • mark

    it goes by cartridge length, straight wall, just like the current pistol regs. Minimum equates to the 357 mag, maximum lenght of case is equal to the 460 smith. Any cartridge in between these 2, and straight wall , 35cal or larger.
    These most common:
    357 mag
    357 max
    41 mag
    44 mag
    454 casull
    460 smith
    50 ae
    These are the most common.

  • Qman

    My 1894 marlin .44 mag will hold 11 RDS, this law will make it legal in zone 2 not in zone 3 changes needed as many of these models exceed 9 RDS
    Not a safety or ethical issue just unnessesary mods to firearms due to poor knowledge by law wording.

  • Beagler

    It stinks that the Senate Outdoor Recreation and Tourism Committee is never going to allow this to move forward because DNR doesn’t want it. They will let the bill die in committee.

    • Handgunner

      It has been passed by the recreation committee. It is now to the committee as a whole and should be introduced to the entire floor when the Senators return from their two weeks off for deer season. I spoke at the hearing when it was in the rec committee and it looked very promising then as it does now.

  • Beagler

    It was just reported out of committee and was recommended for immediate passage!!

  • Z man

    It does not allow enough strait walled ammo types

    • Robert H Scott

      It is better than what we have now, which is none

  • todd

    This is good legislation, Last year it fail to get a vote, let’s not let that happen again. Call your State Senator and ask that they vote Yes on HB 4283! Thanks.

  • wolverine

    What handgun calibers would fall into the 1.16 inches to 1.80 inches ???

    • uncommon_sense

      That means a rifle chambered for handgun cartridges between .357 Magnum and .500 S&W

  • Wayne Rizor

    I welcome this change to the law as recent developments in 12 gauge slug technology have led to the new and very powerful 3-1/2″ shells which have muzzle velocities of 1890 FPS. The manufacturers of muzzle loaders have newly developed ignition systems which will permit 200 grains of black powder to burn in the barrel.and produce muzzle velocities of 2400 FPS with a 300 grain bullet. Think about this for a minute, when a 30-06 with a 210 grain bullet has a max muzzle velocity of 1885 to 2300 FPS and the old standby, the 30-30 brush caliber with a 150 grain bullet has a max muzzle velocity of around 2200 FPS! The law permits muzzle loaders and shotguns with higher muzzle velocities than necked rifle loads with lower muzzle velocities.

    I have a single shot 1874 Sharps .45-120 (3-1/4″) straight sided cartridge that can be loaded to about 1700 FPS max and has a rainbow trajectory, but is yet illegal under the new law. Why can’t the law makers look at this sensibly and include the 45-70, 45-90, 45-100, 45-110 and 45-120 Sharps rifle cartridges and make their decisions based upon the muzzle velocity data from a standard Lyman Reloading Handbook? Note: the 45-120 is 45 cal with the equivalent of 120 grains of black powder which is far below the loads permissible today in modern muzzle loaders.

    This decision is good, but it is woefully incomplete and doesn’t use scientific data to include other caliber loads that fall into what should be a range of acceptability.

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