Indiana deer contraception case may be delayed again

spectr17

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Deer issue could be delayed

Trial on Humane Society's contraception permit appeal could be postponed again.

BY JOYCE RUSSELL, Munster Times Staff Writer.

Posted Friday, December 28, 2001

BEVERLY SHORES -- There may be another delay in the administrative trial involving the Humane Society of the United States' appeal of conditions on its deer contraception permits.

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources granted a permit to the HSUS in November 2000 to begin an immuno-contraception program for deer in Beverly Shores. However, proponents of that program said the DNR permit contained substantial conditions that would complicate the initiating of such a program and, possibly, render it ineffective.

The HSUS filed an appeal of those conditions shortly after the permit was issued.

That appeal must be the subject of an administrative trial in front of a Natural Resources Commission administrative law judge. The trial was originally scheduled to begin this past July. It was initially postponed until this month and then again until Feb. 5, 2002.

However, an attorney for the HSUS said Wednesday that the trial date could be pushed back again for one of two reasons.

The HSUS is seeking to alter its petition, said Gaithersburg, Md.-based attorney Patricia Lane, to change the drug-enhancing adjuvants originally proposed to be used in the Beverly Shores deer study.

Lane explained that the contraceptive planned to be used, PZP, needs to be encapsulated with an adjuvant to protect PZP's proteins and allow them to be effective. However, she said, since the filing of the original petition, the HSUS has found a more effective adjuvant -- Ribi -- that it would like to use in the immuno-contraceptive program.

A telephone status conference is scheduled for Jan. 7 to determine what effect the proposed change in adjuvant will have on the HSUS's petition.

Lane said the Natural Resources Commission could require the HSUS to resubmit its application, which would delay the trial date significantly, or it could also allow the HSUS simply to amend the petition, which would require a shorter delay.

Another option would be to determine that the change in adjuvant holds no bearing on the case and wouldn't delay the trial.

Lane said while the HSUS change in the proposed adjuvant may delay the trial for a third time, another factor may also contribute to a delay.

"Discovery is going slowly," she said, adding that process may not be completed in time for the Feb. 5 trial date.


Joyce Russell can be reached at joycer@howpubs.com or (219) 762-4334.
 

Brad

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Best way to keep deer from reproducing is to put them in the freezer!
 

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