Roadkill could be on dinner tables across California by 2021 if a Senate bill proposed this week wins approval from lawmakers.
SB 395, sponsored by state Sen. Bob Archuleta (D-Pico Rivera), seeks to amend current state law to allow drivers who fatally strike a deer, elk, antelope or wild pig to take the animal home and cook it. The bill, which was introduced Wednesday, also would let people not in vehicles who simply stumble upon a carcass keep it for food.
Under existing law, accidentally killing an animal with a vehicle isn’t illegal, but salvaging it is not permitted. The result, the bill contends, is that the meat goes to waste.
A report published by UC Davis’ Road Ecology Center last year shows that more than 56,000 animal carcasses were found on local roads and state highways between 2009 and 2017. The bill estimates that more than 20,000 deer are hit by cars on California’s roadways annually.
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