State sues Hawaii County over aerial hunting ban - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

State sues Hawaii County over aerial hunting ban

HILO, Hawaii (AP) - The state has filed a lawsuit against Hawaii County seeking to exempt state employees or contract hunters from the county's ordinance banning aerial hunting.

State officials say aerial killing is needed to eradicate feral sheep, goats, swine, cattle and axis deer that harm habitat.

The Hawaii Tribune-Herald reports the lawsuit was filed Thursday in Hilo Circuit Court.

Deputy Corporation Counsel Craig Masuda on Monday said the county hadn't been served with the lawsuit and he couldn't comment.

Violations of the county ordinance are punishable by up to 90 days in jail and a $100 fine.

The lawsuit says the state in December asked County Prosecutor Mitch Roth for an agreement to not prosecute hunters in state-sanctioned aerial animal hunts but that he declined.

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