Ridgefield’s deer hunt debate appears headed for a public hearing sometime in June.
After a presentation on the Conservation Commission’s study of forest understory and a discussion of the hunt, the selectmen in late March agreed on a public hearing to reconsider the deer hunt conducted on town land annually since 2006. The selectmen and Conservation Commission agreed delaying the hearing until June would allow time to solicit a variety of experts to set the stage for public discussion.
“There are two sides to the debate,” First Selectman Rudy Marconi said.
“We began this because of four things,” he said:
“The incidence of deer/auto accidents — we had the highest rate in state of Connecticut — this distinction has come down dramatically.
“Ridgefield had one of the highest rates of Lyme disease in the state. Statistically, we still are running 200-300 cases a year.
“The damage to the understory in our open space properties.
“And the very costly negative impact the deer were having on residential landscaping.”